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Neo-Prog • Australia

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Anubis biography
Australian band ANUBIS was formed in 2004, and the specific aim of the band was to create a concept album. While the plan initially was to honour a dear, departed friend by writing the album in his honour, they have chosen to make this person a more anonymous inspiration as the work progressed. Anubis describe the final result as pure fiction, while the protagonist became anonymous to represent the fact he wasn't actually anyone at all. The final result of this process was finalized in 2009 as the album "230503", and was made available in digital and physical formats towards the end of autumn the same year.

With this first goal achieved it will be interesting to see where this outfit will go next. They have an outspoken vision along the lines of making music that excites them, disregarding whatever trends are popular and they don't have much of an interest in the commercial aspect of their craft either: Their aim, vision and goals are of an artistic nature only.

In 2011 ANUBIS have entered into a formal contract with Birds Robe Records ( and launched their second album "A Tower Of Silence" in September 2011.

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Buy ANUBIS Music

The Second HandThe Second Hand
Anubis Music
Audio CD$19.99
A Tower of SilenceA Tower of Silence
Imports 2012
Audio CD$16.49
$16.48 (used)
JFK 2014
Audio CD$19.99
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ANUBIS discography

Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help to complete the discography and add albums

ANUBIS top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.09 | 166 ratings
4.13 | 427 ratings
A Tower Of Silence
3.90 | 167 ratings
Hitchhiking To Byzantium
4.16 | 53 ratings
The Second Hand

ANUBIS Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.55 | 11 ratings
Behind Our Eyes (Live, 2014)

ANUBIS Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

ANUBIS Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

ANUBIS Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.86 | 7 ratings
And I Wait For My World To End
4.43 | 7 ratings
A King with no Crown
4.80 | 5 ratings
Fool's Gold

ANUBIS Reviews

Showing last 10 reviews only
 The Second Hand by ANUBIS album cover Studio Album, 2017
4.16 | 53 ratings

The Second Hand
Anubis Neo-Prog

Review by Rivertree
Special Collaborator PSIKE Team & Band Submissions

5 stars Are they serving their first or second hand here, or what? ... oh, it doesn't matter. It's not the bands first sign of life of course. This new ANUBIS album runs into a 70 minutes lasting revelation, when it comes to (my) prog standards. Going back to the very beginning ... similiar to Aisles due to 'Club Hawaii' this Aussie sextet made Fool's Gold and The Making Of Me available beforehand. Those songs are addictive really, sorta well sought out appetizer, which won't let you turn away in the aftermath, never ever. What stays, nothing but eagerly waiting for the release date ... and finally obsessively hoping for some more jewels, hell, yeah!

They are returning back to a concept album format, dealing with the downfall of media mogul James Osbourne- Fox, left paralysed and imprisoned in his own body after a severe brain injury, this obviously spiked with references to current conflicts worldwide. The cinematic touch predominantly comes from several interspersed samples, often representing the transition from one song to the next. As for that 'The Second Hand' ultimately comes as an epic unity, moreover somewhat ageless, sounding like a modern blend of neo and art rock, however, due to the offensive use of mellotron, organ and piano, also rooting in the early prog years too.

This album shows the band on its emotive peak, definitely. There's no need, respectively no chance, to emphasize any particular excerpt or involved musician. The entire compositional attitude belongs to the finest attempts I could listen to this year. Featuring diversity and a bunch of catchy moments, alongside with the technical and instrumental implementation, a really stunning result. By the way, Douglas Skene has offered another regarded effort with the band Hemina last year. Perfect, perfect, almost perfect! Hardly ever it occurs that I'll hand over a masterpiece status to a new album appearing ... now here we go!

 The Second Hand by ANUBIS album cover Studio Album, 2017
4.16 | 53 ratings

The Second Hand
Anubis Neo-Prog

Review by RedKnot

5 stars Review from promotional copy:

After loving Anubis' second album - A Tower of Silence (still highly rated on PA after all these years) - a fairly heavy criticism of organised religion seemingly disguised as a ghost story; I had warmed to their slightly edgy lyrical and conceptual stance. 2014's Hitchhiking to Byzantium seemed to represent a different place, and whilst the songs were still very strong, it lacked the cohesiveness and the desire to hear it repeatedly as a complete piece seemed to elude me.

I caught the band in London a couple of years back, and with 'Silence' material dominating all else in their set, I felt they could maybe repeat the trick and turn out something else of comparable beauty and impact.

The Second Hand, largely, seems to have achieved this. Where a world has turned upside down, good guys aren't necessarily good, and nobody knows anything anymore, Anubis steams into the media establishment that gave us Brexit, Trump, ISIS and an endless cavalcade of bad news, anxiety and scalding, debillitating empathy.

By creating a Murdoch/Maxwell/Beaverbrook hybrid, the English public school educated, emotionally disconnected uber- tory James Osbourne-Fox, Anubis project their rage at the system that created the wealth inequity, the establishment and its self interest. It's like Marillion's FEAR in intent, but this one is really furious about it. He suffered some form of accident, or perhaps attempts suicide - 'a noose no longer evades' (we're not told, it's kept vague)

The lyrics are amongst the strongest the band ever had - with the plight of an incapacitated Osbourne-Fox dealt with from the point of regret and realization of the ultimate futility of wealth and power, the ultimate 'you can't take it with you when you go moment'.

Musically, the band have mined the 'classical' approach. It's a symphonic prog record in all but name. The band have claimed to have used vintage equipment, including Hammond organs and mellotrons, and it certainly has that texture all over it. But it doesn't feel like a prog pastiche either, it's literally burning over with ideas and different stylistic approaches that all seem to reach the same end goal. There's beautiful vocal harmony that almost has a west-coast feel, there's avante garde psychedelic moments, some strong stately anthemic passages, sound effects, and in the epic Pages of Stone, arguably their strongest recorded moment, where the ensemble playing is devastatingly effective and the climax rivals even 'The Holy Innocent' for emotional impact.

Is it as strong as A Tower of Silence? It certainly feels like it may be. Time will tell.

 A Tower Of Silence by ANUBIS album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.13 | 427 ratings

A Tower Of Silence
Anubis Neo-Prog

Review by Trollheart

4 stars Anubis are one of the first Australian prog acts I've heard, but if this is what they're all like then I need to think seriously about going Antipodean! This, their second album, is truly a stunner, and again it's from the patented Trollheart "Might as well" stable. In other words, I was looking for something to listen to on my Zen and this was one of the only albums I hadn't already heard, as I am at heart quite lazy even if transferring music to Creative's cool little MP3 player is a thousand times faster, easier and more enjoyable than wrestling with Jobs' colossus.

But I was really glad I decided to give this a go, as it impressed me from the start and has not been off my virtual turntable for at least a week now. Every time I think I should move on and listen to something new my fingers just keep drifting to the "play" button and I say to myself "Ah sure one more listen can't hurt!" And it never does. Except that one more listen becomes two more listens, then three, and so on. It's like that with albums I really get into, I'm sure some of you are the same.

So who are Anubis? Well, if you were to ask me who was Anubis, or what, I'd tell you pompously that Anubis was the guardian of the dead in Egyptian mythology, stylised with the head of a dog and so often known as "The Dog of the Dead", or even "The Guard Dog of the Dead". Not really: I made that last one up. But the first one is true. Anubis the band? Well they were formed in 2004 and their first album was apparently written in tribute to and remembrance of a friend who has passed on, which may possibly explain the recurring motif of death, the afterlife, religion and the soul used here on songs like "This final resting place" and "And I wait for my world to end". I didn't think it was a concept album, but after reading some other reviews I see it is, and is based around the idea of a child who has been left to die in a Victorian mental asylum, and her quest for release and spiritual enlightenment as her ghost wanders the halls of that huge echoing dark edifice: a tower of silence, indeed! There are definite themes of loss, death, loneliness, hopelessness fear and an inability to understand why this has happened running through the album, with the opener, "The passing bell", setting the scene and an angelic chorus ending "All that is", two of the longest tracks, that bookend this fine album.

The vocals are just beautiful on this record. Unusually for any band, not just a prog one, just about everyone in the five-piece has a hand in singing, whether they sing lead, harmony or backing. Some members of Anubis are also multi-instrumentalists. The music varies between soft symphonic prog and harder what I would term "normal" prog, though most will probably term it neo-prog: I'm not too fond of that term. Always think of neo-Nazis and neocons! The guitar work is at times hard and heavy but a lot of it is very laidback and introspective, often both in the one track.

It's hard to pick out favourite tracks here, as just about everything is great. I honestly can't point to a bad song on the album, and every time I listen to it the whole just gets so much better than the sum of its parts: yeah, "A tower of silence" is one of those albums that's best appreciated when listened to in one sitting, as one piece of music or suite. Tolling bells become something of a recurring motif throughout, not surprisingly given the mostly death/afterlife inspired lyrics, and in this way, lyrically only not musically, I see parallels with both Arena's and Kamelot's last albums, though I found the latter's Silverthorn to be one of the saddest and bleakest albums I have ever heard. Anubis somehow manage to avoid the trap of being too down, too morose, which is quite a feat given the fact that they're talking here about a child dying alone and unloved.

But the music is uplifting and powerful, and if you choose to look beyond or ignore the lyrics, if you're the sort of person that can do that (I can't) then you have one incredible album of symphonic prog music that shows a band who are barely known even though they've been together almost ten years now, and who surely have a hell of a bright future ahead of them, if only someone will give them their big break.

I hear a lot of Arena here, especially in the faster sections of the songs, a definite Supertramp influence circa "Crime of the century", and even nineties Genesis at times, and yet Anubis are not just ripping off the old masters or the new pretenders: they have a sound all their own that really has to be heard to be appreciated and is hard to compare. Listen to the starkly beautiful piano passage in the twelfth minute of the seventeen-minute opener, or the close vocal harmonies on "This final resting place", or indeed the glockenspiel and harpsichord melody on the short but gorgeous "Weeping willow". Oh, and let's not forget the incandescent sax solo that leads out "The holy innocent", where the (uncredited) sax player gives John Helliwell of Supertramp a run for his money! You can't help but be impressed. The band are also somewhat unique in having not one, not two, but three guitar players, something that can happen in metal bands but seldom occurs in prog ones. It certainly adds a whole new layer of sound to the music, though it does make it hard for a poor reviewer like me to give credit where credit is due, as there's no way to know who exactly is playing that great solo or passage.

The Arena sound comes through quite strongly in the abovementioned "This final resting place", which in parts reminds me of their "Purgatory Road" off the Pepper's Ghost album, with some eerie sound effect closing it out that brings to mind instrumental prog metal combo Caves of Glass, or Marillion spinoff Edison's Children. If I had to pick a highlight (don't make me! Oh well if I must?) it would probably be between the ten-minute title track, with another beautifully stark piano line driving it and mournful backing vocals against a sumptuous synth and guitar melody, closer "All that is" or the wonderful "The holy innocent". There: told you not to make me choose! It's just impossible.

Just as impossible as it is to stop playing this album once you've heard it. Oh hell: one more spin can't hurt, can it?

 A Tower Of Silence by ANUBIS album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.13 | 427 ratings

A Tower Of Silence
Anubis Neo-Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE & JR/F/Canterbury Teams

5 stars Sydney, Australia neo-proggers ANUBIS were formed with only the intention to fulfil the desire to construct a tribute album for the memory of a lost friend killed in an untimely accident. The result of this grief channeled into creativity yielded their debut album "230503." The album was a success in the niche world of progressive rock but after making such a beautiful album just so rich with magnificent melodies and creative constructs just dripping with originality what do you do when the music is still oozing out of every pore of your body? Well, make an another album of course! And that's exactly what ANUBIS did. A TOWER OF SILENCE is their second album released in 2011 and as it turns out a very good move for this album is every bit as engaging and brilliant as the debut proving that this band was more than a mere one shot.

Apparently obsessed with death and the afterlife the theme of this album is about literal and symbolic limbo, about being trapped between dimensions in the spirit world and in the physical realm. This is a story of a girl who died in the 19th century and is summoned by a group of teens who perform a séance in one of the rooms of an abandoned workhouse where she lived. A mega-concept that truly tackles many a social woe such as social division, alienation and most importantly the mighty unknown. As with the debut album the story is just icing on the cake since the musical compositions are outstanding enough in their own right to keep the listener engaged for the 72:16 playing time developing long drawn out meandering melodies that manage to wrest all the corresponding emotional reactions from the listener.

Although this album could be accused being more of the same started on the debut, I have to say YAY! Such a good album it was that another of the same is just what the doctor ordered :) ANUBIS managed to steer the Genesis inspired neo-prog sound into fresh and fertile pastures incorporating everything from Pink Floyd like space rock to hard metallic rockers with crazy proggy time signatures. While generically being lumped into the neo-prog world this band takes the category and really stretches to the point where it is really hard to classify it as being in any particular subgenre by including a gazillion different sounds including sax solos, flutes and clarinets resulting in an eclectic mix that has a knack for throwing in everything but the kitchen sink and succeeds to smoothly mix and mingle opposing forces without anything feeling unnatural. Although I like the debut just a smidge better because I feel the ending on this one drags just a wee bit I cannot deny the overall awesomeness of this second creation and ranks so close that i'll just call it a tie.

 230503 by ANUBIS album cover Studio Album, 2009
4.09 | 166 ratings

Anubis Neo-Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE & JR/F/Canterbury Teams

5 stars ANUBIS was founded in 2004 by Robert James Moulding (vocals / percussion / bass) and David Eaton (keyboards / vocals/ guitars) in Sidney, Australia and was intended to be a one album project dedicated to the memory of a friend who was killed the prior year. In fact the title 230503 refers to the dreadful date on which the tragedy occurred. The album is absolutely drenched in symbolism beginning with the very name of the band itself which refers to the famous jackal-headed god associated with mummification and afterlife in ancient Egypt. The album took three years to create and would not see a release until 2009. The result of all this carefully well-crafted effort is almost 70 minutes of music which is a beautiful masterpiece of both emotional and instrumental splendor.

Like most neo-prog albums this too is a concept album which while inspired by the loss of a friend, is more of a fictional tale that handles the concept of a man who falls from a boat in the open sea and ends up washing ashore with amnesia. He finds his way back to his city of origin and has to deal with finding out who he is. The story reminds me of good old fashioned Pink Floyd inspired paranoia as do some of the space rock effects in the extended instrumental workouts.

Although neo-prog is the template for song writing and story-telling, the music expands into many musical territories. This is neo-prog that one can totally ignore the story and still be floored by the sheer amount of ingenious twists and turns on a musical level alone. The parts that are associated with neo-prog such as the swirling synth lines is taken to an extreme here as there are so many complementary synth lines that build on layers upon layers to form this melodic behemoth. Equally compelling are the guitar parts that take a Porcupine Tree approach in chord progressions while adding some extremely beautiful guitar solos and fills when necessary, but so forceful and powerful that they nurture my headbanging side while assuaging my thirst for melody.

I simply find myself getting sucked into 230503 so deeply that I never once become bored throughout its entirety. The constant effort to keep the rhythmic pace diverse with the perfectly aligned spaced out slow parts with the hard rockin' ones really paces itself in tandem with the story that is laid out. The music is far more diverse than most neo-prog releases dare go. There are chimes and bells for percussion, there are swirling helices of synth sounds, upbeat swing rock, sizzling sax solos and of course the opening telephone that sets the stage for the narration to unfold which takes the listener full circle to the end which ends with the same. While the general consensus is that the second album "A Tower Of Silence" is their best album, I will have to go against the grain and go for the debut. For anyone who may consider neo-prog to dabble on the cheesiest AOR side of music and simply a form of "soft prog" then I highly advise you to check out ANUBIS who devastates any such cliché and delivers a brilliant blend of influences with a highly developed sense of creative expression.

 Hitchhiking To Byzantium by ANUBIS album cover Studio Album, 2014
3.90 | 167 ratings

Hitchhiking To Byzantium
Anubis Neo-Prog

Review by tszirmay
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars Anubis shocked the progressive community with the acclaim generated by their previous album, the colourful 'A Tower of Silence". Owner of a dazzling cover and artwork as well as a series of riveting prog classics such as "Holly Innocent", "Archway of Tears" , "Passing Bell" , "All That Is" and "As I Wait for my World", one had to be very very optimistic for a follow-up to one of 2011's best albums . Well, the Aussies have decided to keep their talented crew intact, the only change is Robert James Moulding handling the bass guitar with rather pronounced results. With a bar set so high, there would be a natural tendency to compare and then judge accordingly. I generally prefer to stay away from such simple reasoning, as each work is inherently a separate entity, like going to see paintings by your fave Breughel or Monet, and being happy to imbibe yourself with the brush strokes.

Anubis have a style that is uncontroversial, a densely symphonic melange of symphonic keyboards , dual guitars that fill out the sound, a booming bass guitar that is up-front and center and a muscular drum kit that is unafraid to bash. But it's the vocal style of lead lung Moulding that really sets the band apart from its peers, a voice that has its own uniqueness, a hint of hysteria and a slight nasal twang that I find appealing but may grate on some more sensitive nerves.

Upon first glance, it pretty much par for the course, "Fadeout" humorously fading in as an intro, giving "A King With No Crown" its perfect platform and as such, is not far removed from the style espoused on "A Tower of Silence", a hard-edged, nervous and slightly psychotic vocal delivery, with crunchy guitars rambling nastily and the sudden synths pulverizing the airwaves, an aggressive opener that gets the blood flowing right from the start. Moulding howls wide and loud, very convincing but David Eaton's Moog solo is definitely a feature.

"Dead Trees" has a forlorn melancholia that searches out contrasts from serene to passionate, Moulding doing sweet stuff with his voice before exploding the next, he does remind me of Sylvan's Marco Gluhmann (one of the finer voices in prog) , a couple of sizzling guitar solos from both Douglas Skene and Dean Bennison , with Moulding holding down the bass duties. Typical Anubis tune, lush and delightful.

The nearly 10 minute title track wastes no time in presenting the guitar-led melody , a sleepy vocal emerges from deep in the valley, luxuriant washes of ballad-like contemplation, twinkling piano and one-two drumming, nothing complex or overtly aggressive. A dreamy voyage sprinkled with searing guitar themes, perhaps the calm before the proverbial storm, this is like a soothing balm in the pharmacy cabinet. Moulding mumbles like in a soporific cocoon, very convincing indeed.

Bang! Things get almost punky on the tempestuous "Blood is thicker Than Common Sense", a rocking piece that stutters, quakes, explodes and sizzles , Moulding doing a yeoman job with dueling vocals , introducing slight tonal variations to make the illusion complete. David Eaton shuttles a neat organ along, colliding with both guitar slashes in expert unison. Drummer Steve Eaton really shines brightly on the kit.

"Tightening of the Screws" is gentler and more pastoral in essence, yet still imbibed in a great deal of inner conflict , a passionately delivered vocal exalts within the profound symphonics, seared by a fiery guitar solo from Douglas, scorching the celestial skies as Dean scours the riffs below, tossing in some mandolin to boot. This is perhaps my favorite track here, a lovely ride.

The oddly titled "Partitionists" is slightly more nervous, lots of slashing guitars and snarly tone in the vocals, somehow this one does not connect with me. Maybe a need a few more spins but it's just pleasant. On the other hand, Douglas does a wicked axe solo, full of trembling exaltation.

The hulking presence of Pink Floyd stands over the otherwise luscious "Crimson Stained Romance", a clear tribute to the masters of space and time, celestial rolling harmonium waves surmounted by slippery guitar overlays, monotone drum and a sleepy voice that is bathing in psychedelia. The church organ comes bellowing into the congregation only to add some gloom and doom to the cosmic proceedings. Both fret board solos are awe- inspiring explorations as the mood gets more excited and angry.

Multiple radio channels get the proverbial second long chance before a piano and a drugged-up voice introduce the epic 16 minute monster and album highpoint "A Room with a View" (perhaps based on a romantic 1908 novel by EM Forster and a 1985 movie adaptation). Obviously lots of shifts, mood changes and changing scenarios but major kudos to drummer Steve Eaton for some amazing rhythmic mania throughout this sizzler. Moulding's voice is modulated higher, as if a cast member of some theatrical play, lots of harmony vocal help from all the other musicians. This is some of his best singing on the record, very demanding and highly expressive in the 'sweeter' moments. Bluesy guitar rips gracefully enhance the melody, painting a clearer musical picture, adding more crystalline soloing as the song progresses forward. Piano and rolling bass take briefly over, as the rustling flute suddenly shuttles this into almost Jethro Tull environments, the Sylvan singer reminder once again quite apparent. The finale gets all frizzled up with some spiraling guitar exercises, a section that will thrill all axe fans, as both Skene and Bennison unleash some magical licks.

"Silent Wandering Ghosts" terminates this fine album, in reverential melancholia, a sad vocal that has strong Steve Wilson-like despondence, roaming bass and insistent piano to keep things simple and in perspective. A truly great vocal line that may shift one's appreciation of Anubis' ultimate prog value, though Robert has a voice that is not unanimous in acceptance. The restraint shown by the shimmering guitar is to be commended, a sizzling fire that glows deep into the night, slowly fading into the mist.

In all fairness, Hitchhiking to Byzantium is an entirely worthy follow-up to admittedly a top- notch jewel of a neo-prog classic, so we will let bygones be bygones and suggest this to all of those who really loved "A Tower of Silence" and just enjoy the ride. It will probably take many more spins to really delve deeper into it inherent pleasures. I am somewhat surprised at the paucity of revues for this much-awaited release.

4 Free rides to Istanbul

 Hitchhiking To Byzantium by ANUBIS album cover Studio Album, 2014
3.90 | 167 ratings

Hitchhiking To Byzantium
Anubis Neo-Prog

Review by RedKnot

5 stars Expectation was high for H2B as Tower of Silence has been on repeat a lot since I got it. I heard it was coming through an online EPK which seemed to bode well, it all sounded damn fine. However, following a classic is never easy and the pressure was alluded to by even the musicians themselves.

They needn't have worried though. H2B is a wonderful record from beginning to end.

The biggest differences here is that it IS slightly more daring, and will polarise fans a little, I dare suggest. It isn't at all Tower of Silence pt.2, which may for some be a reason alone to turn away. However, that said, the musical DNA is still liberally sprinkled throughout the CD, and some of it is more reminiscent of the raw and edgy approach to their first album, but some of it is also extremely accessible. There may well be cries of 'sell out' when people hear the choruses of say 'Dead Trees' which are very well crafted popular music, but the quirky 7/4 verses and the solo have the same effect as Archway of Tears from ATOS which juxtaposes the accessible chorus.

The intro track, 'Fadeout' is pastoral and sweet, not unlike the first part of All that Is, and A King with no Crown bursts in like an unwelcome intruder with it's sharp angular groove and 'Collapse' like chorus. The aforementioned Dead Trees passes into the title track which is signature Anubis, with all the characteristics (save a sax solo to die for) that made The Holy Innocent such a memorable cut. The girl vocals from All that is are seemingly better integrated into the band this time and the whole song exudes majesty and quality.

So far, so Anubis then. However, nothing prepared me for what happened next.

Blood is Thicker than Common Sense is, in the nicest way, a nasty piece of work. It's unexpectedly violent and twists and turns around in the same way as 'Cygnus Vismund Cygnus' by the Mars Volta or 'Sound Chaser' by Yes does. Coming in at this point, it's definitely tremendously effective, and here its the drumming of Steven Eaton and the bass playing of 'late arrival' Anthony Stewart which delight and shock in equal measure. Robert James Moulding's vocals alternate between shouting and soothing and it's schizophrenic middle section almost sounds like two different voices duetting. It's very effective. The whole thing winds down before ramping back up into a B3 solo par excellence and a massive last section that features sax man Martin Cook on all manner of wind instruments. It's worth the album for this track alone.

The next track is again, by contrast exceptionally effective, being predominantly folky and there's an almost Radiohead like quality to the vocals which is echoed in the sublime bass work. The coda of the track could have come straight from 'Clutching at Straws' or 'Seasons End' and is one of the strongest moments that Anubis have yet committed to tape (or whatever they use these days).

Partitionists is a somewhat nostalgic romp that manages to capture the best of Anubis past with some more excellent drumming and vocal harmonies. This segues by way of church bells into the sublime 'Crimson Stained Romance' which starts off sounding like IQ does Floyd and ends up with church organs and full choirs in full gothic mode, with a soaring guitar solo and a vocal denoument to match.

However, the piece that surprised like no other is the penultimate 'A Room with A View' which seems to be about suicide. The piece begins with eerie piano and keybaord textures before a climax that reminds me of the start of 'Octavarium' by Dream Theatre. This then skips off into a brisk Steve Hackett-playing-Yes sort of solo which is underpinned by an almost Tubular Bells like piano figure. Talk about blending your influences! This gives way to a sparse acoustic like sections chocked full of harmonies (almost CSN and Y at points) before going full circle back to neo-prog. Packed full of gorgeous vocals and exquisite lyrics. Lovely. The middle of the track has an unexpected dance with the ghost of Jethro Tull (did Martin Cook play this on one leg?) and a reprise of the opening gambit before a collosal climax and coda with incredible vocals. Wow. I need a cigarette.

However, no time. As the ending 'Silent Wandering Ghosts', kisses you off to sleep with some of the most tender vocals on the album and a guitar solo that David Gilmour would proudly call his own.

So, this is definitely Anubis' best yet. Where to from here? No idea, but on the strength of this, there'll only be more to come.

Is it as good as 'The Road of Bones'? Hmmm... not sure yet. Too much study of both to do, but it's damn close. Definitely a grower and definitely a record with many, many, many listens ahead of it.

 A Tower Of Silence by ANUBIS album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.13 | 427 ratings

A Tower Of Silence
Anubis Neo-Prog

Review by RedKnot

5 stars Anubis' 230503 was a bit of a blindside. The band came from seemingly nowhere with a curiously edgy sounding take on classic prog. It had some excellent highs - the last two tracks sounded really vital, but the album was a bit patchy and was obviously a combination of first night nerves and inexperience. ATOS takes all of the promise, mixes in a confidence missing from the first set, adds a glorious cover, and sets it all to stunning music.

Anubis won't win any awards for being the most musically original band you'll ever hear. I will say that. The keyboard sounds are tried and tested, the guitar blends Gilmouresque melody with Govanesque pyrotechnics (so far so good) and the drums have the requisite blend of solid time-keeping and classic prog quirkiness. The bass is typically busy, Squire/Lee/Rutherford fayre, but with less bite and twang tonally.

However, none of that is a slight. As the songs are so bloody good that it doesn't matter how 'tried and tested' the sonics are. This album has majesty, it has heart and it's so damn well played, all of it, that it doesn't matter one iota if it's a mellotron or not.

The Passing Bell is a brave opener. If you can get through the opening barage (which I love) then you'll find the album opens up to you more and more, and by the time it reaches the haunting title track, you find yourself slightly mesmerized.

Where Anubis are different is their vocal sound. Robert James Moulding doesn't sound like Gabriel, or Fish, or IQ or Unitopia. There's lots of melody, lots and lots of vocal harmony and different voices too. It's not as much an acquired taste as say, Gentle Giant or Van der Graaff, but it is unique. There's a soulful rawness to the voice that seems to fit the albums desperate feel.

By the time it reaches The Holy Innocent - which I first heard on a Prog mag CD, it goes to another level altogether, and the saxophone solo of Martin Cook must surely be one of the best in recent prog. The last track, the beautiful All that is has a poignancy that grabs the heart strings and tugs for all its worth.

It's an album that continues to move me and make me think. Which all good music should.

 Hitchhiking To Byzantium by ANUBIS album cover Studio Album, 2014
3.90 | 167 ratings

Hitchhiking To Byzantium
Anubis Neo-Prog

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

3 stars I really enjoyed the previous two Anubis albums, and whilst I respect them for evolving their sound rather than treading water I found this latest effort, Hitchhiking to Byzantium, doesn't quite work for me. It naturally feels slightly less cohesive than its predecessors, because unlike them it isn't a concept album, but it goes further than that - Robert James Moulding's lead vocals bug me here in a way which somehow they didn't on the previous albums, and their musical influences have shifted from the likes of Muse and IQ to a blend which reminds me more of Keane and Pink Floyd (or rather, the castrated modern approximations of Pink Floyd lots of bands try to offer up). Decently performed and some will probably love this, but it isn't quite for me.
 Hitchhiking To Byzantium by ANUBIS album cover Studio Album, 2014
3.90 | 167 ratings

Hitchhiking To Byzantium
Anubis Neo-Prog

Review by praj912

5 stars This album proves that Anubis' previous masterpiece was no accident. H2B is more original, has more influences and goes above and beyond AToS in a lot of ways. It has all the grandeur of the previous release but throws in some more modern, and retro, influences to create a diverse style, there's a bit of everything.

'Fadeout' begins the album in a relaxed dreamy neo-prog way before 'A King with no Crown' arrives with its jagged groove and vocal hooks. Lyrically it deals with the 'fake' talent show phenomenon and realises the reality that it's all a short-term fame. It's a bit aggressive, and the hooks in the chorus may not grab you instantly, but they will get you in the end. It's main feature is a dreamy moog solo as an interlude and this really takes this song to another level.

'Dead Trees' skips off, sounding not too unlike something 'The National' would produce until the chorus catches you. Dealing with the end of a relationship, it's a worthy next single, there's some nice atmospherics, first with the drum loop intro and then the guitar and keyboard harmonies in the chorus. We are then treated to an expressive guitar solo with a great bass-line and drums, before the song changes completely and becomes a slow atmospheric piece with a great bass-line and concludes with a trancelike guitar to fadeout.

The title track is less bombastic than I expected, it has a laid back Sunday afternoon feel to it, but rather than sailing by, it draws you in to its lush melodies. The last 3 minutes of the song build to a crescendo of guitar and keyboard harmonies. Quite magic. Listen.

'Blood is Thicker than Common Sense' picks up the pace with a quick fire vocal trade-off in the verse and staccato riffing and drumming before the chorus comes in. The vocal trade-offs continue throughout the song while the drums keep the tempo busy. There's a great rhythmic interlude in the middle with a nice guitar solo followed by a great Hammond solo. The ending sprawls out with a nice progressive guitar riff in some time signature I can't be bothered to figure out.

The opening acoustic chords of 'Tightening of the Screws' lead into one of the strongest 'songs' on the album, The vocals are gentle and melodic with a marching bass-line before the strong chorus drags you in. There's some nice guitar tinkering, some mandolin and some creative drumming that intersperse the verses and choruses. At the end we are treated to one of the best moments on the album, with the guitar solo unisoning with the keyboards. Again, just listen. 'Partitionists' begins ominously before a funky 70s guitar riff takes us through the verses and onto the chorus. Again the theme of 'false gods' and society's love affair with the dollar and fake ideals prevail. This song is one of my favourites, it grooves along before changing tempo and allowing a chance to cut a little bit loose with a tastefully blistering guitar solo. Magic. Another tempo change before leading to a smashing Led Zeppelin Presence era-like finish. I love Zep.

'Crimson Stained Romance' is certainly drawn from the darker parts of Pink Floyd (it was inevitable at some point), but it is quite wonderful due to the female backing choir, before a beautiful solo with so much space to breathe leads us to what I love best about Anubis. A change. Then the church organ kicks in followed by a sweeping guitar solo and a real high point of emotion with the return of some sublime backing vocals.

'A Room with a View' is ~15 minutes of bliss. Anubis have tried before and succeeded with Track 1 of their last album, but this track beats that for me. It starts with a slide guitar intro and goes through many changes over its 15 minutes but never loses its flow, lots of musical interludes throughout the vocal sections. It starts ominously with a pensive piano riff and some slide guitar before picking up the pace. The initial verses feature a gentle lead vocal line before bringing in the vocal harmonies, then there's a flute driven musical interlude before the pace picks up again with some nice vocal harmonies and a stellar closing out sequence that I cannot describe.

'Silent Wandering Ghosts' brings things together with the emotive coming together of the album's theme, again you need to listen to this, it builds perfectly before finishing with an excellently restrained guitar solo.

It would be remiss of me to not mention the cover artwork, which is again excellent. Artwork is very important to the visuality of the music on a disc, it provides tonal colours to enhance the music. The overt blue of the previous album gives way to a darker but more multi-coloured scene. Quite apt.

So overall, there's more going on on this release, lots of little treasures hidden in the mix, guitar tinkerings, atmospherics, keys, lots of tempo changes. I haven't covered half of it. Anubis use all their influences to create an dynamic listening experience. A worthy follow up to AToS; it sounds more original but retains the stylistic trademarks that make Anubis a band to rival their contemporaries and their influences.

Thanks to Windhawk for the artist addition. and to E&O Team for the last updates

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