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Thread: Anathema - Distant Satellites

  1. #26
    After more listens today, the title track is my favorite. Reminds me a bit of "A Natural Disaster" and/or Radiohead. Love the vocal melody.
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  2. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by playbass View Post
    After more listens today, the title track is my favorite. Reminds me a bit of "A Natural Disaster" and/or Radiohead. Love the vocal melody.
    I definitely hear the Radiohead influence in the vocal lines on the title track, even the mixing/effects of the vocals.

    Save for the vibe of Lost Song Pt 3, I haven't really heard much that reminded me of Natural Disaster in all truth.

    Kind of a tangent, but interesting to hear folks refer to Natural Disaster as the cutoff point for old vs. new Anathema. To my ears, that particular transition (they've had several) really started with A Fine Day To Exit (anyone here who likes the latter Anathema owes it to themselves to go back and listen to 'Temporary Peace' from Fine Day...still one of their most gorgeous moments IMHO). Of the earlier stuff, I like bits here and there, like stuff from Alternative IV and Eternity...although Judgement never clicked for me for some odd reason. And I've never really gone back and listened to the very early stuff with the harsher vocal style.
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  3. #28
    I love Judgement, but thought Alternative 4 was kinda boring aside from a few standout tracks.

    I stick by my comments that the new album is a cross between WS and A Natural Disaster in regards to mood.

  4. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by marblesmike View Post
    I stick by my comments that the new album is a cross between WS and A Natural Disaster in regards to mood.
    I think there is some truth in this. However at this stage I definitely prefer A Natural Disaster to the new album. I'm trying to decide whether this is just because I am getting used to the sound of Anathema.

    If A Natural disaster was their latest release, following Weather Systems, I probably be saying that it was also a disappointment. Still, Disaster does not have any track that I really dislike - that "Pulled Under..." song comes close, but it doesn't make me cringe the way You're Not Alone does.

    Anyway, I have several other CDs on their way to me, and several more on my "need to get" list, so I'm going to forget Distant Satellites for the time being, return to it at some later stage and reassess it.

  5. #30
    For me, I have been following this band for well over 10 years. During that time I have seen them play live quite a few times. I have seen them with the full band, part band part string section and more recently acoustic. You do hear influences but to me they push their own boundaries. The fact that different people are now talking about certain albums from the band's different periods being their preferred listen tells me that this band has progressed.

    The latest album has pushed the band to a whole new level. I hate to use the P word but, for me, if ever their was a band that was true to that genre then, for the reasons above, this is one. It is not all about how close a band can recreate the sounds of Genesis or Yes.

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Toothyspook View Post
    For me, I have been following this band for well over 10 years. During that time I have seen them play live quite a few times. I have seen them with the full band, part band part string section and more recently acoustic. You do hear influences but to me they push their own boundaries. The fact that different people are now talking about certain albums from the band's different periods being their preferred listen tells me that this band has progressed.

    The latest album has pushed the band to a whole new level. I hate to use the P word but, for me, if ever their was a band that was true to that genre then, for the reasons above, this is one. It is not all about how close a band can recreate the sounds of Genesis or Yes.


    Agree 100%. Very well said. They are a true prog band. I'm baffled by people who say they don't like the new album because it doesn't sound like their previous [insert album name here] album. Why would they want to do another or sound like 'We're Here Because We're Here' or 'Weather Systems'? They've already done it and trying to recreate those albums wouldn't be very progressive. It's the same discussion when the Porcupine Tree threads pops up with the usual "I don't like 'In Absentia' or 'The Incident' or 'Fear of the Blank Planet' because I like 'Signify' or 'Up The Downstair' better and would like them to do an album like that one again" attitude. Not a very open minded or "progressive" mindset by many here.

    I just returned from a trip to Atlanta and found my copy of 'Distant' Satellites' in the mail and played it on my stereo last night and it sounds even better than the on-line stream. I love that it doesn't overstay it's welcome, the total time is just right. I think it's an impressive album and I think it will be at the top of my list this year for sure.

  7. #32
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    ^^^ Re the above comment, my lack of enthusiasm for Distant Satellites is not because I want it to sound like WHBWH or Weather Systems, It's simply due to the fact that I am not very enamoured with how it does sound. As I've said before, that may change.

    As a matter of fact, I think part of my problem is that the bits of Distant Satellites that I like sound too MUCH like Weather Systems.

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by battema View Post
    (anyone here who likes the latter Anathema owes it to themselves to go back and listen to 'Temporary Peace' from Fine Day...still one of their most gorgeous moments IMHO).
    Thanks for this tip! As a latter-day-Anathema-fan, I agree with your recommendation! Only, how do I edit out the 10+ minute "In the Dog's House" drivel that follows???

  9. #34
    Seventh House Neoman's Avatar
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    I love Anathema but I just can not get into this album at all.

  10. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by ScottAM View Post
    Only, how do I edit out the 10+ minute "In the Dog's House" drivel that follows???
    Try the same song from the Hindsight album.
    Actually have a listen to the other songs on the Hindsight album, which has a number of the old songs done in a simpler acoustic orientated production and supposed to highlight the strength of the songwriting from the early Anathema years.

  11. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by deandob View Post
    Try the same song from the Hindsight album.
    Actually have a listen to the other songs on the Hindsight album, which has a number of the old songs done in a simpler acoustic orientated production and supposed to highlight the strength of the songwriting from the early Anathema years.
    Hindsight has some amazingly cool re-interpretations of earlier songs. My personal favorite is "Are You There" which I might just like more than the original.

    Spent a fair bit of time with Distant Satellites this weekend...overall if it had been released a year ago and marketed as "leftover material from Weather Systems" then I think it'd be just fine. I don't think it is as strong as WS or WHBWH, or Natural Disaster, and so on. There are some very good songs on it, such as the title track but on the whole, save for that song there aren't any peaks quite as high as those on the prior albums. As as a cohesive album, I think the prior two releases had a better flow from start to finish. Some of the songs, like the Lost Song 1 & 2, even feel as if they are attempting to repeat the formula from Weather Systems in terms of feel.

    I do *like* the album for what it is, and would happy go see them on tour supporting the album if they came through...but I also don't have any illusions that it is a huge triumph in Anathema's catalog. And for me personally, it doesn't signal anything more (or less) progressive than what came before. In terms of latter-day Anathema, I think Weather Systems remains their high point.

    Just my $0.02 of course...
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  12. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by deandob View Post
    Try the same song from the Hindsight album.
    Actually have a listen to the other songs on the Hindsight album, which has a number of the old songs done in a simpler acoustic orientated production and supposed to highlight the strength of the songwriting from the early Anathema years.
    Oh yeah, spot on. I forgot that I have Hindsight already! Yes, I like that album a lot and the arrangements are gorgeous. I still need to get "Falling Deeper", which I guess is like "Hindsight Part II"?

  13. #38
    I agree that Distance Satellites isn't as strong as Weather Systems but still OK, and the standout tracks for me are Ariel, Anathema and Distant Satellites (I don't mind the electronic beat). They are on tour for the first time in Australia in August and am looking forward to seeing them live (check out their 'Universal' blu-ray/dvd concert disk to see how much emotion they put into the renditions).

  14. #39
    Quote Originally Posted by deandob View Post
    I agree that Distance Satellites isn't as strong as Weather Systems but still OK, and the standout tracks for me are Ariel, Anathema and Distant Satellites (I don't mind the electronic beat). They are on tour for the first time in Australia in August and am looking forward to seeing them live (check out their 'Universal' blu-ray/dvd concert disk to see how much emotion they put into the renditions).
    I saw them last year supporting Weather Systems (just before Universal came out), and they *are* very good live. You'll definitely enjoy the show
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  15. #40
    PE Member Since 4/9/2002 NeonKnight's Avatar
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    I've heard a few of their tunes, here and there over the years. I've liked what I've heard, but had never listened to an entire album of theirs before today.

    Thanks to that great progstreaming link up thread...

    First listen through was rewarding, will spin again on the home system.

    Initial preferences were for:

    Dusk
    The Lost Song(s)
    You're Not Alone (One man's cringe is another's vintage tunage.)
    Title track
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    ^^ "Tunage" is a word that's new to me.

  17. #42
    PE Member Since 4/9/2002 NeonKnight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob_32_116 View Post
    ^^ "Tunage" is a word that's new to me.
    Don't worry. You're Not Alone!

    (I just made it up.)
    “Where words fail, music speaks.” - Hans Christian Anderson

  18. #43
    The DVD 24-bit stereo has serious clipping.

    I was listening to the 24-bit stereo on the DVD, and thought it sounded less good than the CD. I ripped the CD with EAC and the DVD stereo tracks with DVD-A Explorer to get them on the same footing, and still the 24-bit sounded odd. I opened both sets of WAVs in CDWave, and there is some pretty awful clipping/limiting on the DVD-sourced stereo tracks. The 24-bit waveforms look like a perfectly cut hedges in all tracks except the quieter 'Firelight'. The CD could have been less compressed, but it sounds (and looks) a far better listen than the DVD-sourced stereo, which has some very odd mastering.

    Is anyone else able to listen to the CD and DVD for a comparison?

  19. #44
    Member BobM's Avatar
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    Listened to Weather Systems this morning on my commute. There's a ton of very ear catching things on it, and a wide enough variety song to song to keep me interested, while keeping the band's new sound intact.

    Just listened to the new album via progstreaming - twice. I agree, it sounds like leftovers from the last 2 albums.
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  20. #45
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    I liked Weather Systems a lot, but this album makes me wish it was over after half of the first song.

    Just really boring. I'm glad I listened to my friends copy and didn't buy it.
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  21. #46
    It seems this album is dividing people.

    There are half that love it (I'm one of them....shatters the cheesy Weather Systems to my ears) and half that think it's terrible. No middle ground. I do think that this album will move up on people's lists over the years. I initially thought it was boring upon the first few listens, and it seems most people I've read that don't like it have only played it once or twice. After multiple listens I loved it. Now I actively try NOT to play it too much for fear I'll ruin it for myself.

    Also, for those interested, the vinyl version sounds far better than the CD. Worth picking up if you're an audiophile.

  22. #47
    I'm really starting to warm up to it. I'm a bit disappointed they opened with another Pt. 1/Pt. 2 song (and the relatively unnecessary Pt. 3), but the rest is really solid. I love the title track, Ariel, and Dusk and the other songs are growing on me as well. I think You're Not Alone is great! The Steven Wilson influence is unmistakable on this song.

    I loved WS and think I will love this one given enough time. Internal Landscapes is my favorite song by them, and nothing on this album comes close to that, but I find myself a bit more eager to listen to this one than I initially did WS.

  23. #48
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    Very disappointed in this release from one of my very favorite bands......

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    I don't understand the negative comments about Distant Satellites. Personally I liked the last couple of CD's from the band. They contain some really great songs but overall I found the albums to be somewhat inconsistent. This new album though is pretty much good from start to finish. I am enjoying it. Style wise, it is a tad bit different than the last few albums, but still very much Anathema. Very much recommended.

  25. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patelena396 View Post
    I don't understand the negative comments about Distant Satellites. Personally I liked the last couple of CD's from the band. They contain some really great songs but overall I found the albums to be somewhat inconsistent. This new album though is pretty much good from start to finish. I am enjoying it. Style wise, it is a tad bit different than the last few albums, but still very much Anathema. Very much recommended.
    I agree with you. Although I really liked 'We're Here Because We're Here' and it has a couple of Anathema's favorite songs ("A Simple Mistake", "Angels Walk Among Us"), I found that album a bit inconsistent, but still a great record. 'Weather Systems' is a masterpiece to me, every song is great. 'Distant Satellites' takes the sound of WS and expands it adding the electronica bits. It is meant to be listened as an album and as such, it is more consistent than 'We're Here..." and, to some extent, even WS. I'm really hooked on this new album, I've been listening to it every night and with repeated listen it gets better and better. Sometimes I wonder if some of the criticism here is because Anathema doesn't sound like Yes or IQ. I'll put it this way, if 'Distant Satellites' was the debut album of a new prog band, everyone would be raving and drooling about it. Personally, I highly recommend this album and, as it stands, it is my favorite prog record of the year so far.

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