Art of the Insane

Paranoid Metal Webzine

The cover of this album might let you think Denata are starting to go in the direction of their fellow countrymen Darkane or even In Flames, but the truth is very different. On Art Of The Insane, Swedish thrashers are sticking to the recipe of the previous albums, powerful and uncompromising old-school thrash metal, with trips into death metal here and there.

Quick, short, concise are the words that describe Denata's last album. In good thirthy minutes they thrash away twelve songs, including a Celtic frost cover Morbid Tales, which emphasises their dedication to the old-school. Art Of The Insane is based on simple, effective riffs, with little space to experiment, but this has been their trademark from the beginning. There is even less »experimenting« coming from their new drummer, but his work could be a little less monotonous. The image is more than appropriately completed with raw, aggressive vocals.

There are no special surprises on Art Of The Insane, but Denata have done a good job. Old-school thrashers could easily bang their heads at the sounds of Art Of The Insane. - Matjaž

Payo Magazine

The new album of Swedish band DENATA is opened by a great sound and even lots of my brain cells are shaking from fear of old school thrash they are pretty nice surprised with this piece. Since beginning you hear ass kicking temp, cutting riffs, killer drumming, pure infernal vocal loops, arghh. Expect scary lyrics of darkness, old forgotten houses, corpses, blood, signs of death, vrr. Who wouldn´t like to turn fifteen years back not to give up the great sound which DENATA built thanks to nowadays´ echnologies in the studio. For example if they would come out with song „Prophecies“ which has got hit ambicious in thrash-years of SLAYER, TESTAMENT or DESTRUCTION I´m sure that more people would fall down on their backs than nowadays. If it was normal to cut such music in past, where are these golden years now. But now I know that if this Swedish trio (yes, they are really three) will appear somewhere near I will put the dust away from my jean-jacket with SLAYER on back, put on more silver pyramids and I will thrash my head ´til death! Yes my dear, old school is back in Europe and if everything is so good we can fill up our stereos back with such material. This attack coming from the world of dead will be rewarded I´m sure of it! Bury your heads you all who you have thought that there will not come anybody who would show you the real lesson in thrash. This is a lesson and pretty cool so let´s believe in matter it will not stop somewhere. Solos like hell, hair turning songs like „Deathtrain“ or „1349“, „Pentagram“ – that fits like bitch. I think we will hear more about this demons again! 8

Hard Beyond Driven

For years Sweden has been known for bringing us some of the best bands in the Heavy Metal world. Denata is one of those best kept secrets, but maybe not for long. This is some of the best and fastest Thrash riffs I've heard in ages.Art of the Insane should have also come with a "How to Mosh/Slamdance"manual due to it's seriously intense riffage. I love the way this Disc does not let up at all!What three guys from Sweden can do when you give them Instruments is pretty incredible. Art of the Insane being Denata's forth CD release since 1999 has shown the bands maturity with experience over the years.Tomas Andersson and his other band mates have taken the Thrash Metal torch and hold it up high for all to see.As black/death Metal bands worldwide stir things up with their brand of metal, Denata have shown true passion to their roots sticking with the bands early to mid 80's Thrash Metal sound still in tact with each release.They also pay tribute to a very influencial band from the 80's covering the classic Celtic Frost track "Morbid Tales" in excellent fashion.Brutal metal fans worldwide beware! Denata has come to saw off a few limbs and keep the Art of the Insane as Heavy and fast as you'd expect. 9.5/10 - Metal Mike

Metal Zone Productions

Swedish Thrash Metal maniacs, for the ones who still don't know this band they sound like Whiplash first album "Power and Pain" and you have missed two albums that should be in your collection so get those ones quick. Art of the insane: this is the third masterpiece of these great Thrashers! Thomas Axe is swinging better than ever and the screaming are getting crazier than ever! Tomas even touches Death and Black Metal on some songs which will please a hell of Metal maniacs outhere. The sound is getting stronger and better but we can easilly recognise the Denata sound. The songs are pure old Thrash Metal and we will hear sometimes Kreator 's Extreme Aggression riffs. But what most surprises me is that the songs are well written and we can still appreciate the creations without thinking of a specific band. This album should definitively get them on the high step and promise to become one of next generation's favorite band. The lyrics are excellent and "The chainsaw massacre" is a baby compare to Denata's insanity!!! Get that masterpiece from -ARCTIC- now!!!

Concrete Webzine

Those having heard previous work (either the band’s ’99 self-titled debut 12"EP, 2000’s "Departed To Hell" album, or 2002’s "Deathrain") by this Swedish Speed Thrashing trio may find there’s some changes. First, the departure of drummer/ part time vocalist Pontus Sjösten in September of 2002 (since then replaced by Ake Danielsson) due to medical reasons, has made that guitarist Tomas Andersson is now completely and solely responsible for all singing on the album. He does his best to complement his rather Black growls (actually it fluctuates between a nearly-scream and a nearly-growl, and something something in-between, that’s like a screamed growl, see?) with overdubbed extra vocals, in which part of the band’s wackiness can still be found at times. Also, while the band was originally formed purely for the fun of it, the guys seem to take their music a little more serious these days, even if their style is still locked in that era of the early Sodom, Kreator, and Destruction-type thing! Once you get over the weird combination of the type of vocals used with this Speeding Thrash, you actually start to appreciate what’s on offer, especially since there are quite a few catchy guitar riffs on the album. And besides, they do have a couple of ‘slower’ moments as well, with acoustic intros or middle sections to a couple of songs (and adding two creepy ‘spoken word’ bits to the album’s title track). Only 3 of the 13 songs last over 3 minutes (one of which being the album closing Celtic Frost cover "Morbid Tales"), making the album only just under 36 minutes long, but well worth your spent money if you’re into ‘80s Teuton-type Speed/ Thrash Metal! Look out for an e-mail interview with the band! 83/100 - Tony

Sacred Angel Webzine

There Swedens Trash metallers - Denata return to the metal scene with "Art of the insane". This 13 tracks full lenght album was released in well known metal label - Arctic music. Quality of music was very good, it makes whole listening very nice. Vocal was not very traditional to trash bands, death based voice sometimes reminds me Sweden Death metal bands such as Dark Tranquillity. So I could name this band a brutal Trash metal band. Very heavy and aggressive music, but I liked it.

Walls of Fire

Thrash bands from Sweden usually either sound like bad Slayer clones or too melodic. Fortunately, Denata’s new effort “Art of the Insane” falls into neither category, even though the wrapped bodies on the cover might make you think one of the two is the case. Ahem. The “Morbid Tales” cover at the end of this CD should tip anyone that knows anything off that these guys know their oldschool stuff and aren’t just a bunch of wannabes trying to hop on the bandwagon.

“Art of the Insane” sounds roughly like a slightly modernized Exodus with Black Metal-ish vocals. The occasional use of Death Metal elements and the overall flavor of the music remind me a little of the criminally underrated Merciless, which is always a good thing. What’s probably most impressive about the album is the production, though - it sounds extremely crisp and transparent, putting a lot of productions from the big and hip studios in Sweden to shame.

On the downside, while the musical direction on the album is blissfully free of current trends, the songwriting isn’t exactly laden with creativity. A lot of the songs sound very similar, and the riffing is often somewhat basic. The band tries to alleviate this somewhat with the occasional twin guitar parts in the vein of Slayer (you know the routine - open chord/riff - drumfill - both guitars play riff), but overall, the material comes across as a little bland.

Still, this is certainly a well-executed album, and the fine production alone should be reason enough for any Thrash fan to at least check it out.

Eternal Frost (USA)

Back from the depths of Swedish hell, forging ahead fiercely, are DENATA, thrash masters of the highest sort. They still have the tongue-firmly-in-cheek attitude, but their intense brand of thrash (read: old school thrash) bludgeons. They don't stoop to the modernizations that most Swedish thrash bands seem to hold so dear, like techno sound effects or ultra-polished productions or sounding like THE HAUNTED. No, they don't do any of this. They wear their influences (which are easily KREATOR, DESTRUCTION, and I hear a ton of SODOM in the vocals) on their spiked leather sleeves and are proud of it. They play fast, aggressive metal. They don't apologize for being unabashedly metal. Hail to DENATA. We need more like you. - Andrew Parrish

Vampire Magazine

“Art Of The Insane” is already Denata’s third album and second on Arctic Music. I got acquainted with this band through their second album “Deathtrain” and I thought this album was pretty cool, though the production definitely needed improvement. With their third album this point of criticism can be taken away, as the production is much ‘n much better. Heavy and good sound (though the snare might sound like a cardboard box at times) and well balanced. So this definitely has improved. Now how about the music? After several spinning turns I have to conclude that I’m not really impressed by the ‘new’ Denata, nor am I very disappointed. You see, Denata deals with old school thrash. On “Deathtrain” they played rather enthusiastic and threw in slight influences from other genres. Somewhere along the line they probably got the idea that pure old school thrash was hot and on “Art Of The Insane” it’s only thrash that you hear. Now there’s nothing wrong with thrash, not at all, but about every song here is revolving around one riff which totally dominates the song. With this comes the fact that almost all (!) songs are played at the same pace with some variation in breaks and afterbeat. Also, all songs have got an average of about 2:45, which also contributes to the fact that this album has a rather monotone vibe which I kinda dislike, as it really sounds all the same. Now on the other hand the music isn’t bad and the songs all breathe forth an almost genuine old school sphere. Also, as I mentioned, the production is more then decent and here and there I did discover some cool ideas. This album is finished off with a cover of Celtic Frost’s “Morbid Tales”, also one of the positive things on this release. So there you have it. Mixed feelings, and sadly I’d have to conclude that the negative side weighs a bit heavier than the positive side. The monotony is something they need to work on. Why not continue and expand in the vein of “Deathtrain”? I would ask. Their decision not to of course, but unfortunately not that appealing. - Danny


Art of the Insane is an overpowering, intense, intimidating mix of thrash, black, death and grind. It's not extremely technical or anything of the sort, but Denata doesn't have any problems keeping their listeners' attention. The vocals are really throaty at times, almost enough to sound a bit black metal, but the singer drops his vocals to death metal style often as well. I'd go with Darkest Hour meets Nasum meets subtle Dying Fetus, Kreator and The Crown with a lot of Swedish influence.It's great to see a band have something different to offer, with most of the music released sounding the same these days. Denata is not a band to bore; the entire cd fluctuates, while keeping tremendous amounts of energy and creativity. Art of the Insane is definitely more thrash-oriented than anything else; There's absolutely nothing to complain about. It's fast, it's heavy, and there's tons of energy and diversity. This is one of the best releases out of Sweden in awhile; Denata is impressively original, yet at the same time bringing back a lot of old thrash influence and blending it with the ever-increasingly popular death metal sound.

Metal Rules (USA)

This is the third album from the Swedish based Denata from Linköping. Denata is about to follow up their latest effort “DEATHTRAIN” from -01 and on this album they have worked even harder and taken their music to another level. The reason to their new improved music development could maybe be explained by the fact that they have changed studios from Guja Studio to Hellsmell Studio (both are located in Linköping) and that they have used a producer instead of producing themselves. “ART OF THE INSANE” was recorded during January-March -03 and they were produced by Mique and Toxine (Witchery) together with the band. The production and the soundpicture are very hard and heavy just like it should sound. They have done a much better job with the production on this album than on the previous one. Theirs is nothing bad to say about the production at all. Denata plays very well played old school trash/heavy metal and they have developed their music a lot compared to “DEATHTRAIN”. “ART OF THE INSANE” is a very violent and brutal album with some more melodic parts and the tempo is more shifting than on the previous album. Tomas impress on vocals with his broad vocal range and he shifts between ordinary/trash and sometimes growling vocals trough out the album and on guitar, the new member Åke is not to bad behind the drums and they sure sound like a lot more members in the band than only three.The band has gathered 13 tracks on this album, 12 are their one and one is a cover by Celtic Frost's “MORBID TALES”. This trash metal madness begins with “MARIONETTS OF DEATH” fast trash heavy metal with a lot of tempo. Tomas shifts between ordinary vocals and more aggressive growling vocals. “INSOMNIA” intro with only guitar before the band starts off. The tempo rises, old school trash metal and here Tomas sounds really aggressive. It’s also a lot of tempo changes. “PROPHECIES” and “SATANIC TRASH HELL” heavy trash metal with slow parts in the middle with just acoustic guitar and vocals before it goes back to the original music again. “WHITECHAPEL’S MURDER” heavy/raw trash metal. This track is not so fast and once again Tomas shows his aggressive side. In the chorus Tomas voice sounds even darker. “ART OF THE INSANE” intro with only acoustic guitar before it starts off and the tempo rises on all of the members in the verses. In the chorus the speed slows down and in the middle there’s a slower part where it goes real slow. “A WORLD OF LIES”, “BELOW THE SURFACE”, “NO MORE DAWN”, “HAUNTED GROUND” and “CONVICTED” fast trash heavy metal with very angry lead vocals and a lot of tempo changes. “BORN IN SIN” starts off with the first chorus instantly. Heavy grinding trash metal and in the verses the tempo rises. The chorus is instantly repeating trough the song and it’s mostly chorus trough the song and not so many verses. “MORBID TALES” is the last song. It’s fast old school trash and it goes really fast. In the middle there’s a slower part and a shorter guitar solo before the tempo rises again. Denata impresses big time. If you’re a fan of old school thrash/heavy metal, a strong vocalist/guitarist, well written material, a good production and a lot of guitar riffs this is definitely something for you. The album doesn’t have so many guitar solos but it works anyway. Denata has done a really strong album and all of the songs are really strong. I haven’t any favourite song all songs are equal. As an old trash fan I think this is brilliant, and Denata has delivered a brilliant third album. With this album they ought to gain more fans around the world and I hope that they are heading out on the road so you can catch them live. - 4.0/5 - Anders Sandvall


Hailing from Sweden, Denata come from top pedigree and have the burden of trying to live up to the reputation that is demanded from Scandinavian bands. Described accurately as a raging thrash inferno, Denata come across as the missing link between the old (Kreator, Sodom) and the new (The Crown, The Haunted). Featuring fast and furious twin axe attack and full speed battery Denata give the listener no chance of escape from their bulldozer assault approach. Lyrically and conceptually you could be forgiven for thinking the band were closer to the Death Metal end of the spectrum with scenes of death and violence littering the audio and visual landscape. Where Denata is let down however is in their variation, especially in the vocal department in which everything is sung in the overused death grunt/growl style. Overall however ‘Art of the Insane’ is a solid, violent slab of thrash played by a band with intent to kick your fucking arse. Well worth adding to the ol’ collection and adding to the thrash rotation.Favourite Tracks – Satanic Thrash Hell, Insomnia, Morbid Tales - 7/10

Jackal Blaster (USA)

The third album from these Swedish thrash maniacs, Art of the Insane is a napalm fueled, full speed assault of brutal, galloping metal. Blending the definate sound of early 1980's thrash with the brutality of death metal, Denata steer clear away from the trendy 'At the Gates/The Haunted' sound that has continously plagued the genre, and come across fresh and absolutely convincing on this steller piece of work. The awesome, grisly artwork paves the way for the sonic intensity unleashed on this masterpiece, with full destruction and chaotic thrash throughout its entirety, with the clear production letting the material shine like a sharp slashers blade. Their well done and to the point horror film and pulp fiction horror inspired lyrics are a welcome feast of flesh, as tales of homicide, murder, demonic possession, ancient evil, and other ghastly tales are unwoven to absolute aggression, frenzied screaming, and rasping death growls. Of the many awesome tracks contained here, Denata's version of the classic Celtic Frost tune "Morbid Tales" gives a definate boost of speed and evilness to the original, and "Satanic Thrash Hell," with its lyrics that pay true homage and tribute to all of the bands of the 1980's, Slayer,Venom and Exodus in particular, is aptly titled indeed. Art of the Insane is a highly recommended album for fans of aggressive thrash and raw death metal. Denata clearly have their own sound and formula, and they should be commended for staying true to the raw beastial nature of their sources, keeping their music violent and evil, and in the end producing a masterpiece of thrash-death metal. This is one of the very best thrash-death metal albums to come along this year. Well worth it.

Lords of Metal (NL)

Simple, pounding thrash metal is the trademark of the Swedish band Denata, a band that’s been known to me since their debut “Deathtrain” (2002). Thrash metal that has an influence on the ‘mosh muscles’ so to speak. After listening to their second CD “Art Of The Insane” it appeared to me that one hasn’t have to expect nothing new from this Swedish trio. Again, pounding thrash metal reigns, packaged into short, compact, up-tempo eighties’-influenced tracks like “Satanic Thrash Hell”, “Convicted” and “Below the Surface”. However, it appeared to me that the overall tempo is a bit slower in comparison to the debut and hey, I hear a grunt growling by every once in a while. And I didn’t hear that on the debut. Denata is nothing special really. It hasn’t got pretensions and lacked an expensive studio budget in order to waste it on nonsense gimmicks. It’s just a nice band with twelve cool songs in their pocket and that’s it. The Celtic Frost-cover “Morbid Tales” sounds a little bit lame actually, but what the hell… - 70/100 - Marco

Tartarean Desire Webzine

Denata returns with their third album. This band is still rather young but a couple of the band members are veterans in the local metal scene and as we all know experience and practice will get you somewhere. Arctic Music is one of the few underground labels on the American continent who are serious about production work and every single release from that label is of very high sound quality, this one being no exception. "Art Of The Insane" follow pretty much the same pattern as their previous album "Deathtrain" with aggressive old-school thrash metal but the song writing has now been taken to a higher level with more thought put behind the song structures. Imagine what it would feel like running straight into a brick wall without any protection. That is what will happen when you hit the play button on your stereo or remote control and the first track begins. The album is intense, massive, full of energy and the harsh vocals also give it a black edge. Fans of old-school black / death / thrash metal should check out this band. 7.5/10 - Vincent Eldefors

Hellride Music (USA)

Frequent Hellride forum and review readers know that many of us denizens of Hellride culture have a soft spot for good, ol' fashioned thrash metal. Something about the mix of aggression and speed that satiates like no other.

So it's with great pleasure that I get the chance to say a few words about Denata's fourth release and third full length album - a no bullshit, low-to-the-ground thrashing machine that boasts fortitude and confidence enough to add in some of the more technical elements of death metal for good measure. This is a no frills type of release, no electronic shtick or filler material. It's 35 minutes, 13 songs, including a helluva cover of Celtic Frost's "Morbid Tales". Some songs that stick in my head are the first track "Marionettes of Death" which whips up a metal tempest that doesn't relent until the last chord of the last and aforementioned cover track. "Insomnia", the amazing "Prophecies" and the title track are some other gems worthy of your attention.

Grant it, this isn't a groundbreaking release by any means and I think that'd be pretty hard to come by in thrash metal at this point given the vast expanse of ground that has been covered in the last twenty years. It's all about interpretation now, and this is where Denata excels. The other drawback is the same that I've mentioned on just about every other recent thrash release, especially those coming out of Sweden.... the slashed-throat vocals are no longer a differentiating factor, and in fact could be a detriment in standing out from the pack. Still, given the quality of the material, this is a pretty small factor.

Worth an investigation if thrash with a hint of death metal starts a buzz between your ears. - Chris

Brutalism (The Netehrlands)

Second album from these insane thrasher from Sweden. This album continues the Deathtrain trend but all in a higher level in quality. Playing more tight, good compositions and good production. Denata is sowing that there still are bands than can keep the flag held high. Raw vocalstyle, cutting guitarriffs and thunderous drumming. As a bonus you get a cover of Celtic Frost but they can fill a complete album with tribute songs of the mighty old ones. All their good stuff you hear back in these 12 tunes. Thrashers attack!

Live4Metal (USA/England)

Now when I caught the Deathtrain that Denata last brought romping into the station a couple of years ago I was suitably impressed. Since this came out us poor people in London have seen our train system virtually collapse. As for these Swedish thrash monsters with Art Of The Insane they have gone and done completely the opposite. Whereas Deathtrain could be summed up with the words “damn good fun”, which if you think about it is not really the biggest selling point, the new album is a groove laden belter of a ride and one that is so fast it virtually causes a derailment. A band reshuffle due to the previous drummer unfortunately suffering serious damage to the ears sees Thomas Andersson taking on all vocal duties and Åke Danielsson picking up the sticks. Full applause must also be given to the striking sleeve artwork and it certainly makes a nice change to get a metal album that is not all illustrated in black. The crystal clear production instantly impresses, as does Andersson’s growl laden vocal stance coming across as a mix between Angela Gossow and The Cookie Monster! The lyrics of Marionettes Of Death are straight out of a Lucio Fulci (RIP) movie and the pace of the music has the bodies twitching from the rafters. Insomnia breezes in with a distorted riff that really reminds of Angel Of Death (and I bet a dollar this is intentional) as for the headlong furrow this flails out there is obviously going to be no sleep here until hell freezes over. Prophecies has a great guitar hook sinking into your head before an unexpected classical sounding break adds a dark tranquillity to the violent assault. You really need a track called Satanic Thrash Hell to live up to its expectations and by the dark lord Beelzebub himself it does just that. “Mosh till death” and “thrash, thrash, thrash”, this bastard commands and just like Anthrax never happened, it well and truly delivers the bloody goods. “Suicide is the only solution”, is the proclamation behind A World Of Lies and in true At The Gates fashion the gun is cocked and loaded. Born In Sin is one of those tracks that repeats itself ad infinitum, ramming its message home without remorse. Just to wrap things up before burying it all we get a nice gnarly cover of Celtic Frost classic Morbid Tales, rocking us all the way to the mausoleum. Art Of The Insane is a fiery resurrection of an album and one that certainly wont see Denata buried.

Demonic Horde (Norway)

Denata is a Swedish thrash Metal combo composed of 3 members, that already released a first ep in 99, their debut album 'Departed to Hell' in 2000, and their second opus 'Deathtrain' on Arctic Music Group in 2001.The band returns with their third full length, still on Arctic Music Group, a darker album composed of 13 short and restless tracks of thrash/death Metal released with a good production and a more powerful sound than in the previous release. Denata's musical style evolved toward a darkened thrash/Death Metal, the vocal style is also more varied and lower, balanced  death metal tones are alternated with aggressive, yet incisive and raspy vocals, as on the energetic 'Marionettes of Death' or on the ultra fast & longer 'No More Dawn' & 'Below the Surface'. Denata still play aggressive and scanned tracks of old school thrash metal with fast yet broken riffs, as on 'Insomnia', marked by repetitive & sharp riffs and a slower break. Some brutal and short riffs sustained by a solid spongy drumming, as on 'Convicted', or the more grinding 'Born in Sin', a solo even enhances the fierce 'A world of Lies, also darkened by more screamed vocals. Some intro and more progressive breaks are shaped by acoustic guitar notes and whispered spoken vocals, as on the varied 'Satanic Thrash Hell', also pierced by outstanding bass lines. The highlight is the heavier and pounding 'Prophecies', played in a balanced Death Metal style with several rhythm changes, catchy and brutal riffs in the vein of Blood Red Throne, and deeper alternated vocals. The last 'Morbid Tales' is a cover of Celtic Frost, that contrasts with the other compositions, especially with the riffing style and the overall tempo. The white layout displays clinical corpses in a style that rather contrasts with most of the Metal covers, usually dominated by darker motives and artworks. Full lyrics are included to the booklet, they are deeper & less humoristic than in the previous Denata outputs and tackle still ultra violence, murders and suicide themes, even satanic tales. The Evil even twisted a bit this release, as the tracks 'A World of Lies' and 'Convicted' appear inverted on the back cover, definitively Denata's best output, recommended. More on theOfficial Denata Domain, on their Label Arctic Music Group, Get their merch. at Razamataz, or listen to an MP3 of 'Art of the Insane' album here. You can read Denata interview on DH.

Tombstone Webzine (Greece)

The new album of the Swedish thrashers is a bit more extreme than their previous one and a bit better also than their previous one. The music can be described as extreme and modern thrash metal with elements from more extreme music and one thing they have clearly improved is that the songs are not so repetitive as they used to be. I didn’t really like the vocals since they are aggressive and semi-brutal, while I would prefer them to be more clean. There are some nice riffs in the album and while their songwriting needs some improvement to leave the “average” tag behind them, the songs are very straight forward and in your face. I liked this approach they have and I think that the guys have the potential for something better. The production is not bad at all and I am sure that they’ll find their place among new thrash metal bands with time and with the necessary improvement.