Archives of the Dead part I… Anasarca - Condemned Truth (demo 1995)
Line up: Michael Dormann (Guitars, Vocals), Christian Jansen (Bass), Heiner Saliger (Drums) and Frank Tholen (Guitars)
Germany's death metal scene has never really been my favourite, to be honest. Obviously this country managed to spawn some bands, which I like and appreciate, such as Atrocity (first two LPs only though!), Morgoth, Torchure, Agoraphobia, Mangled Torsos, as well as some bands, which are still active, mainly Fleshcrawl, which is just a killer band and also Obscurity, whose demos were really, really good. But for such a big country, with some of the biggest labels and just huge market for metal music, it is relatively small number of truly memorable 90’s death metal bands, don’t you think? Obviously there were also some bands, which I haven’t mentioned, but I haven’t done that just because they were far too mediocre – Eternal Dirge, Fearer and I guess I can also say Anasarca, who never has had the quality, which would let them enter the first league of the European death metal. Anasarca never managed to release stunning and classic albums – and let me remind you that they’ve released three full lengths between 1997 and 2004… They were solid, but also just too forgettable, in my opinion… and you know what? When I listen to Anasarca's debut demo "Condemned Truth" I can say exactly the same - it's a decent music, but really nothing more than that, it’s nothing special to be honest and once listened it quickly gets forgotten and doesn’t leave even a small mark of impression at all.
Speaking of the beginnings of Anasarca, the band has been formed in 1995 after some members left Vomiting Corpses. I actually have never had a chance to hear Vomiting Corpse's only album "Coma: The Spheres of Innocence", but someone told me it was pretty good... who knows, maybe it was... Anyway, also in 1995 "Condemned Truth" gets released – only few weeks after Anasarca was actually formed. Musically it is more or less a typical death metal, one which takes some influence from the US, British and also from the Finnish scenes. It has that specific brutality and heaviness of bands like Baphomet / Banished, Purtenance, (early) Gorefest, and so many other significant death legends. But the problem here is not the lack of originality, but the fact that the music is just unimaginative and that it lacks a spark and some sort of brutalized energy, which would crush everything around you and force some violent reactions. With only five songs one would expect something more lethal and gut ripping… But no, none of these songs Anasarca is able to impress me and the whole performance is just dull. Maybe the fault lays in relatively mediocre production, but I wouldn’t go as far as that… Sure, the demo could have sounded more energetic and forceful (the drums for instance sound terribly weak), but the material is also just boring. There are no effective riffs, which would force me to bang my skull and rip my entrails out, the vocals also don’t sound too brutal (I especially don’t like those high pitched screams in “Sick” – what a crap!)… plus on top of everything, those more melodic and groovy parts also don’t help to rescue the demo. No, it is just damn boring and ineffective stuff, I can say that Anasarca on "Condemned Truth" is nothing, but a third league band. And – as the history tells – they never went anywhere further with any of their three albums, which followed the demo. Nowadays I don’t even know if Anasarca still exists… I doubt and I don’t even know if I care.
Final rate: 50/100