Season Of Mist)

For those not familiar with Christian Antoniou’s side project in Chaostar, it’s quite a bit different than his extreme metal offerings in Septic Flesh. Chaostar is born out of Christian’s love of all things classical, operatic and just artsy in general; and that formula seldom sees the use of metal elements or even a guitar for that matter. Originally meant to be based on the Greek epic of Medea for which the song “Medea” still remains, Anomima is at its core a sort of opera with elements of electronics, film-grade orchestration and the vocals of Androniki Skoula who are more often than not, in the form of Greek opera. So if you don’t particularly care for opera music, then it would be recommended to steer clear of this release entirely. Although the album features both David Vincent (Morbid Angel) and Francisco Ribeiro (Moonspell) on certain tracks, the metal listener might find their inclusion odd on a disc which is for the most part filled with a mix of opera, darkwave and ritualistic fervor. This album has much more in common with groups like Two Steps From Hell, Arcana, Black Tape For A Blue Girl, Dead Can Dance and Classic-era Nightwish (sans metal) than it does with anything even remotely located in the extreme metal variety. Septic Flesh’s last release The Great Mass might have showcased extreme metal at its classiest, but I’m afraid that this album might just be too much of a leap for fans of that particular strand of death metal to take. Additionally, the dubstep referenced on “Truth Will Prevail” is absolutely unforgiveable and led me into further distaste for this release. One of the only redeeming qualities that I found on this disc was in its bonus addendum in the form of “Canticles 2” which left me yearning for the wonderful electronic experiment that could have been. While I can certainly recommend the project’s back catalog and profess that earlier albums have had more influence from extreme metal, Anomima is certainly an unexpected turn that while elicits spectacular soundscapes and atmosphere; achieves little more in retrospect. If you’re looking to take a break from the noisier side of things, then Chaostar’s Anomima might just be the perfect break that you need, and it might make you appear sharper and more cultured than all of your friends. But for everyone else, there’s certainly something a bit noisier and much less classy out there. (Eric May)

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