Atheist Reissues

A band quite ahead of their time, Atheist were bending strings and minds alike way before today’s tech-metal bands were even playing instruments. Suitable that Relapse has decided to reissue the band’s catalogue, given that much of the label’s roster has been in some way or another influenced by Atheist. Combining old school death metal with odd time signatures, labyrinth riffing and some very odd experimentation (especially later in their career), Atheist’s three albums still sound good today. Their debut, Piece of Time, is the most primitive, and for many, their favourite for that reason. Still, primitive is a relative term here: this album sounds like it could have been released in 2000, not 1989. This reissue contains several demos, including the R.A.V.A.G.E. demo, which was Atheist’s original moniker. 1992’s Unquestionable Presence is the band’s formative album, where they began to expand their technical chops; sadly, bassist Roger Patterson passed away before the album was released. This makes hearing the enclosed demo tracks even more powerful. Their third and final album, and personal favourite, was 1993’s Elements (which includes a live radio performance from 1992). Here the band added in leftfield elements of flamenco guitar, piano and samba music, and threaded the album’s disparate tracks together through a damn near-hippy concept. Check out "Water” for the ultimate Atheist experience. Although the debut was reissued a while back, this is the ultimate collection of these out-of-print gems. (Relapse)