By Dr. Mality

At every level, this is a confounding and surprising release. The name is gibberish that reveals nothing and the dreary cover art also tells nothing about what kind of music is within. It so happens that the name is a combination of the names of both band members and that they are an instrumental duo hailing from Iceland.

I don’t know what I was expecting here, but what I got sure wasn’t it. This is unlike anything I’ve heard this year and it cannot be pigeonholed or put in a box. First track “Svensk Revelje” almost literally caved my head in with a cyclone-like blast of raw, murky and HEAVY music. What consistently amazes me about the sound of Anfinnsaas is how thick, swampy and organic it is. The production is loose and extremely fat and bassy. The drumming is absolutely jazz fusion based…this cat owes far more to Buddy Rich and Gene Krupa than Dave Lombardo or Mikkey Dee. The drums are wild and all over the place, with a lot of swing. Each song is different. “Svensk Revelje” is furious and filthy,  the song “Anfinnsaas” ranges from dark and doomy post-metal crush to piston-like riffing, “Halandsdal” is like a combination of early 90’s noise-rock with more of that hammering riffing. Often the band has a kind of mechanical feel to its riffs like old Fear Factory, but the raw production gives it a rubbery and entirely different character.

You have no idea where this music will take you. There are very quiet, almost subliminal parts that are ghostly. They build up tension and then ultimately explode. The final long track “Spissrot” is very quiet and actually has a long stretch of complete silence in the middle before the song chimes in with basic, almost childishly simple thick guitar chords. This is something completely off the wall. It’s not prog metal in the traditional sense whatsoever yet the way tracks like “Elve” are constructed seem very progressive.

Doom, noise rock, djent, nu metal, and primitive sheer heaviness all combine in this completely unpredictable release. It is certainly not going to be to everybody’s taste, but for those who aren’t afraid of the unknown, Anfinnsaas is an eye-opener…a new type of heavy rock!