Anaal Nathrakh played what could have been their final show at the Scala venue in London on December 14. At the time of the show announcement, Anaal Nathrakh stated that guitarist Mick Kenney would be absent as he experienced a "change of plan… which meant that his focus had to shift, for the time being at least."
Upon completion of the show, the band thanked everyone for coming and stated (with a note of hope for fans) that they were going to "take a moment to catch our breath, and then figure out what might be next, if anything." Now we know what's next – the glorious continuation of Anaal Nathrakh.
In a statement by the band, Anaal Nathrakh confirms they will not end and that there are plans for a few more shows throughout 2023 (the first of which is the Damnation festival). The band also notes that Kenney will continue to be filled-in for by other guitarists. We're just glad that Anaal Nathrakh is sticking around.
"This cannot, and will not, be the end," said Anaal Nathrakh. "Following the success of the show with Sigh and De Profundis in December and, with minimal desire to gush, the response from fans, we have decided that we will keep the London live lineup together and play a limited few more shows in 2023. There's just too much endarkenment, too much unfinished business and too much visceral thrill, both for us and hopefully for fans, not to.
"As before, Mick's schedule means that he can't be there. Though to be clear, he's completely on board with the plan. So we will be in a situation vaguely similar to Immortal a few years ago with the live band being an extension of, but not including all of, the studio band. Many people will not realise there's a difference.
"Many others will likely not really care – OK, a 'stand in' live guitarist, that just happens sometimes, no big deal. But we are hopeful that even those who pay closer attention will, like that generously enthusiastic crowd at Scala, understand the idea and be able to get behind the shows. We're all only alive once. Let's burn a measure of our passion in the Anaal Nathrakh live crucible."