Who is the optimist? Elements of our psyche? Of yours? The part of us that secretly yearns for escape? For meaning?

For a reason? Would you like to know more? Well why don’t you come and find out?”

Daniel Cavanagh, Anathema

Following a phenomenal set at this weekend’s Download Festival, Anathema have announced their headline tour of the UK in September, in support of their brand new album The Optimist (Louder Than War review here). The band will be joined by be accompanied by French blackgaze pioneers Alcest  ( ).

The full UK tour is as follows with tickets on sale from Friday 16 June


22 – Glasgow Garage

23 – Belfast Limelight

24 – Dublin, The Academy

26 – Manchester, O2 Ritz

27 – Sheffield, Plug

28 – Bristol, The Marble Factory

29 – Exeter, Phoenix

30 – London, O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire


Anathema’s eleventh full-length The Optimist was released on 9 June through Kscope, where the ambient rockers revealed some of the darkest, most challenging and unexpected music the sextet have put their name to and has garnered some incredible reviews from the UK media

Led by brothers Daniel and Vincent Cavanagh, along with drummer John Douglas, singer Lee Douglas, bassist Jamie Cavanagh and drummer/keyboardist Daniel Cardoso,  Anathema recorded The Optimist in the winter of 2016 at Castle Of Doom Studios in Glasgow with producer Tony Doogan [Mogwai, Belle & Sebastian, Super Furry Animals] at the helm and was mastered at the legendary Abbey Road Studios.


“The album of their career thus far.”  Prog Magazine – Album Of The Month

“The Optimist showcases the blissful chemistry that now exists within this particular line up” Classic Rock Magazine

“The Optimist delivers on every level”  Metal Hammer Magazine

“‘a band finding new ways to be magnificent so far into their career”  KerrangMagazine

“a record that makes the world better for its existence – and you can’t ask for more than that” Planet Rock Magazine

“Anathema really do cement their title as one of the UK’s most revered rock bands”  Drowned in Sound

“The band are surely one of the country’s most innovative and imaginative rock bands around today.”  Musipedia of Metal

“this could well be their greatest work to date”  Ghost Cult

The Anathema website

They can be found online on Facebook and Twitter


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Mike has been contributing to Louder Than War since 2012, rising through the ranks from contributor to Sub Editor and now Reviews Editor. He brings his eclectic taste to the table with views on live shows (including photography) and album reviews, features and interviews from rock to metal to acoustic and folk.


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