Anata is a technical death metal band formed in Varberg, Sweden in 1993 by Robert Petersson (drums), Fredrik Schälin (lead guitar, vocals), Mattias Svensson (guitar) and Martin Sjöstrand (bass). Anata's penchant for penning unrelenting death metal with a razor-sharp sense of melody has always been an inherent trait in their songwriting. As the band grew as musicians and songwriters, the music shifted into a darker, more death metal direction. Performing live with Dissection, Lake Of Tears and Beseech, Anata also proved to be an intense live outfit. It was in this arena that the band honed their skills equivalent to that of their more experienced countrymen.
Anata's first demo, "Bury Forever the Garden of Lie", was recorded in June 1995. The recording was met with overwhelming success from the European press, and furthered the band’s visibility in the worldwide market. Yet, even with an acclaimed demo behind them and increasing interest from press and labels, guitarist Mattias Svensson and bassist Martin Sjöstrand left the band in 1996. In the same year, Anata found a new bassist in Henrik Drake. Ready for battle once again, Anata recorded their second demo, "Vast Lands of My Infernal Dominion" in 1997. The demo signaled a continued drive to venture faster into the depths of death metal, using the blueprint drawn and re-drawn by their American counterparts as a guide. By year’s end, the band found Andreas Allenmark to fill in as second guitarist.
The quality of "Vast Lands of My Infernal Dominion" landed in the hands of French label Season Of Mist, and only a year later Anata was in the studio recording their debut album. Titled "The Infernal Depths of Hatred", the album featured four songs from their second demo as well as four new tracks. Tracks like "Released When You’re Dead" and "Aim Not at the Kingdom High" ushered a move into thicker, bottom-heavy death metal while "Slain Upon His Altar" and "Dethrone the Hypocrites" maintained the band’s yearning for harmonic structure. As evidence of the album’s greatness, French magazine, Metallian, voted "The Infernal Depths of Hatred", "Album Of The Month".
The mounting praise from fans and critics alike didn’t stop Anata. Never one to rest on their laurels, Anata started writing for a second full-length. "Dreams of Death and Dismay" harnesses Anata's punishing songwriting abilities into 10 explosive songs of uncompromising, punch-you-in-the-throat aggressive death metal. Anata's fierce, all-over-the-fretboard riffing, however, never compromised the band's superb melodic sense. The seamless combination of musical elements and culmination of many years of experience shows that "Dreams of Death and Dismay" isn’t merely a death metal album with fantastic melodic purport, it’s an album that shows where the genre has been and where it’s headed. Anata is the future of intense, intricate metal.
In April 2001 drummer Robert Petersson left Anata and was replaced by Conny Pettersson, and the new line up signed to Wicked World in August 2002. Taking the best part of 2003 to record their latest album, the band eventually emerged from Studio Mega with the phenomenal "Under A Stone With No Inscription", released in January 2004. Having developed their sound into something genuinely unique, the band suddenly found themselves bracketed with the likes of Cryptopsy, Dillinger Escape Plan and Meshuggah, so erratic and formula-free was the material on offer. Attracting praise from all quarters, the band set about embarking on their first UK tour with Decapitated, in March 2004, ending with a sold out show at London's Camden Underworld.
In July/August 2005 they entered StudioMega studios to record their most recent full-length release to date, "The Conductor's Departure" which was released in June 2006. While still mantaining the Anata's trademark death metal style uncompromised, the album featured a darker and gloomier sound. Conventional death metal rhythms and riffage alternate with atonal harmonics, resulting in an album which balances the concrete with the abstract in an intriguing manner.
On July 29th 2008, it was announced that guitarist Andreas Allenmark decided to leave Anata. A member of the band since 1997, it has been said that his passion for playing such technical music has been lost.
In his own words:
"Due to personal circumstances I have decided to leave Anata. This truly wasn't an easy decision to make and I really hope all the best for the other guys in the future.
I would like to thank all the fans for coming to the gigs and for showing great appreciation through all the years that I have been in the band, it has really meant a lot to me!!!
This did, however, not hinder the progress of the band's songwriting for the fifth full-length album with all guitar duties being taken care of by founder/guitarist/vocalist Fredrik Schälin. Their fifth full-length album, set to be called "Greed Conquers All", was recorded, mixed and mastered in 2008, but their current label Earache has refused to cover the production cost, resulting in the band not being able to release any new material until they get the economical support they ask for through a record deal.
Anata also means "You" in Japanese, but the band is named after an Egyptian Goddess of War who protected the people from Animal attacks. She was brought to Egypt from Syria by Hyksos in the beginning of 17. century B.C.
Official website: http://www.anata.se