CD Review: Anubis “Live”

Back in June of this year, Anubis played at the Sonic Rock Solstice in Builth, Wales. Yes, you have guessed right, the set was recorded live and is now available as a digital download worldwide. This gig was the eighth for the band and is captured magnificently. It has been produced with no overdubs – just raw as it was played, with no edits at all.

I was unable to attend this music fest last year, which stages so much great music, but this album puts you right in the thick of it and captures much of Anubian’s live atmosphere. This is the third album release from Anubis (I have reviewed the debut album, Sibuna, and follow-up, Waking The Dead, here on The Rock and Roll Report) and I kid you not, with this release of Live there will be little rest for the dead.

A brief introduction to the set by Kosmic Ken really puts you right in front of the stage and then ‘’Til It Hurts’ from Waking The Dead is played. This really sets things going so well and leads into ‘Locked In,’ the opening track from the same album. ‘Chenevare’ follows, a guitar-based instrumental from Waking The Dead, and flows so well as it oozes with warmth, richness and depth. The addition of Horus in the form of Simon Haycock (rhythm guitar) to the group now allows this track to be played live. This gig was Simon’s second live set with Anubis.

Next up is ‘In Your Mind,’ which is a rock masterpiece written by Simon Lees who is on guitar and vocals, and Sarah and Kev take care of the harmonies. This song was originally on the EP named Avatar. ‘Magic Carpet’ lifts off next, driving home the Egyptian theme so well and so solidly. Kevin Bartlett on drums nails this with powerful precision, along with Pete Williamson on the bass. Sarah adds keyboards while Simon Lees provides guitar and vocals. Yet another fine example of the mighty Anubian power.

Another song from Sibuna follows in the shape of ‘Angry Dolphins.’ Simon Haycock returns to the stage to help with the delivery as Simon Lees is very busy in this instrumental. As with all of the tracks, the musicianship is first class and after having seen Joe Satriani play live recently I can easily say that Simons’ quality easily matches Satch’s. As always, Pete supplies his superb bass along with Kev’s magical drumming. Sarah once again plays keys beautifully, enhancing and completing the mix.

The truly atmospheric ‘Stalked By Sadness’ follows, highlighting yet another side to the sheer quality and variety of styles that this incredible band are capable of. From Sibuna this is sung by Simon Lees, the ‘Isis Mix’ of this song is also on the Avatar EP. And after an intro by Sarah, ‘Abandoned’ follows once again showing the diversity of Anubis. This song shows off the strengths and qualities of Sarah’s vocals with Simon adding to the harmonies. The song is from Sarah’s Wish EP, originally released last Christmas and now re-released once more. Simon adds a little guitar solo at the end of this, which leads right into ‘Masquerade,’ another brilliant example of Anubian finesse from Sibuna. This song also has Sarah providing perfect vocals over such a strong song.

‘The Pharaoh’ closes the album, again from Sibuna, and is another mighty instrumental showpiece of all of the Anubian elements and attributes.

This album was recorded absolutely live and produced with no overdubs at all, just raw as it was played. As an engineer by trade, I do not believe in perfection, so I have to give this release a 9.9/10 rating. It highlights the diversity of styles which this band just takes in their stride so well from such a great selection of releases from the Anubis stable.

Rating: 9.9 / 10

Also, you may have read my feature, review and interview with Huw Lloyd Langton here at RockAndRollReport.com Sarah from Anubis is now collaborating and working with Huw and they are set to release an EP in the new year. There is also to be a radio show special coming up on http://www.ekr.net/ by Pete and Sarah. Pete will be doing a Hawkwind special and interview with Huw about his time with the Hawklords and his upcoming work with Sarah.

For all the latest on Anubis:http://www.myspace.com/theanubisprojectuk