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Ordog : Remorse

Ordog's new release is a bit of a challenge for the reviewer...

Ordog seems to be one of the hardest-working Doom bands nowadays. Let me explain: over about six years of their existence, the band has now put out a third full-length record, alongside a number of demo records. That is quite a challenge for a Doom band, isn't it? But even more interestingly, the band seems each time to be able to drown their listeners in better sound and better songwriting. Therefore, their new opus, ’Remorse’, released on Violent Journey Records is a bit of a challenge for the reviewer... those who have already heard the band before probably must have admitted that there is something sympathetic about these Finns, be it their apparently ceaseless effort, or perhaps a certain taste which allows the music to flow through without disappointing the listener with ideas that would disturb the progression of the songs or simply wouldn't work.

That said, ’Remorse’ starts off with the song titled ’Human Shell’, offering a quick overview of what the present musicians are capable of. Unlike the rest of the album, the song is a relatively up-beat, mid-tempo track that throws one tasty riff after another, accompanied by a quite unique blend of growls by the vocalist / keyboardist Aleksi that have a very fine tendency to not step in and take away the listener's focus, but instead to dissolve somewhere between the middle of the sonic scape, towards the background. The song actually ends up with Ordog repeating a single riff for a while, and although this doesn't really sound like the minimalism of Funeral Doom acts like Skepticism or Tyranny that can keep this up for long, long minutes, paradoxically it holds well even for a rather Death/Doom act that could be broadly described as a mix of the three Ms – Mourning Beloveth (unthink the rather frequent use of clean vocals), early Morgion (unthink the occasional tempo rushes) and a bit of Mournful Congregation (unthink the extreme slowness), resembling the first and the last especially when the band slows down after the first track and starts unpacking some more mournful melodic lead guitar riffs. The band thus doesn’t really display extreme crushing brutality like in the case of diSEMBOWELMENT or Indesinence, but rather a little more melancholy, without needing to remind the listener about its vital powers.

The title track that reaches almost 20 minutes in duration seems to be one of the highlights of the album, offering alongside in tiny bits a very experimental use of some kind of occasional guitar flanger-effects that can be found in the background, pretty much reminiscent of Dolorian or the last Evoken full-length. These make some of the sections even more interesting and literally demanding a next listen. After a long while, the track turns into something that almost sounds like a Doom Metal jam-session with the keyboards in particular showing some playfulness and enjoyment in throwing around some fairly sorrowful tunes and ideas. Such moments do make the album sound like a few steps ahead of their previous release, the relatively well-received ’Life is too Short for Learning to Live’. As if the angel on the cover that holds a scythe was supposed to say there's more than last time (there was an angel holding just a knife on the cover before...) to be found here.

I very much believe that, at least with this piece, Ordog have came close to qualify as a band that can not disappoint, and although I'm not yet convinced they will ever qualify as one of the leading names in the Death/Doom subgenre, it has everything an interested Doomster would appreciate.

Reviewer's rating: Unrated


Tracklist :
1. Human Shell
2. Betrayed
3. Shadowland
4. Abuse
5. Remorse
6. Boneyard Horizon
7. Meant to be an End (Outro)

Duration : Approx. 70 minutes

Visit the Ordog bandpage.

Reviewed on 2011-03-08 by Lukas
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