This March the German metal stars Orden Ogan have released their seventh full-length album “Final Days”, based more on dark sci-fi themes during these apocalyptic times. And once again they have stayed true to their long-term collaboration with a local heavy/power metal-friendly label AFM Records.
Orden Ogan exists for 25 years now, and their history has undergone visible changes – from their original line-up there’s only has left their leader Sebastian Levermann; and they have managed to relocate into different metal division, from folk metal to power metal. Even their power metal tends to mutate and absorb into itself the new stylistic improvements. Their solid heavy/power metal foundation isn’t just based on classical principles, with every new record Orden Ogan‘s sound becomes more and more modern, getting closer to alternative music concept. The technical guitar tricks refer to progressive influence, but polyphonic keyboards remind even of djent. And everything is covered with a thick layer of melodic and synchronized harmony. Some melodies are so catchy, that they would safely fit into pop hits, but without sugary aftertaste, this album still has the balls of steel, because the core of the music is very much metal.
The massive guitar chords flow through all the songs, shaping their metal temper and building their drive while electronic keyboards infiltrate the soul, creating atmospheric and sophisticated details. The symphonic notes amplify the epic solemnity in compositions like “Interstellar” or “Hollow”. The acoustic elements add to this male energy of the album some romantic points, so the ballad “Alone in the Dark” proves, that these guys aren’t strangers to melancholy. This song also features the guest vocals of Ylva Eriksson from the Swedish band Brothers of Metal; her pleasant, but not too emotionally rich voice echoes the powerful and confident singing of Seeb. The modern and alternative vibes are presented almost on every composition, especially “In the Dawn of AI” and “Black Hole”, so the opulence of contemporary influence really embraces “Final Days” into futuristic hug. The progressive strictness goes through the speedy guitar solos, often with classical influence, and the glory of it is focused on the composition “Interstellar” with guest performance of famous guitarist Gus G. One of the main trademarks of Orden Ogan is also presented on their last creation, the melodic and catchy choruses (often with muted choirs) still strongly lead the positions, quintessential to power metal genre. In contrast to power/heavy metal directness, the synthetic sound on the background softens the general perception and provides dreamier mood.
Orden Ogan is one of the bands, who are constantly in hunt for changes, though their developed personal musical style stays the same. From reticent ethnic influenced heavy metal, they have managed to shapeshift to modern and confident power metal with strong compositional structures and memorable melodic lines. And with every new record they experiment a little bit farther, using all the possibilities and creativity to enhance their music into multi-layered vision of art.
Release date: March 12, 2021
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