Monday, November 16, 2009
Orodruin - Claw Tower ...And Other Tales of Terror
This is a compilation of all the Orodruin demos along with a new track.
The album opens with, “Claw Tower” which is the only new song written by the doomed ones. As soon as the play button is pushed, Nick Tydelski and John Gallo let their bar chords ring. This first riff chugs along at a pace and tone that hearkens back to the golden days of metal. The rhythm is mid paced, but with slamming drums and a mini blues solo, this song has a movement made for driving the expressway.
The next song, “Creation Through Death (reprise)” is a remake from the first demo. This track moves like a George Romero zombie. Heartfelt lyrics and slow funeral dirges capture the emotions one may feel during a time of bereavement. A sluggish solo breaks in at the end.
The next track, “Unspeakable Truth” is a live version. It would take a careful listen to determine that this is not a studio track because the production values are very solid. The bass really stands out in several places on this song. Near the four minute mark, the tone softens and Puleo’s voice rises and falls with the harmony of his bass. The bass line combined with the shorter beat of the drum builds tension. This tension is aggressively released once the guitars pounce back into the mix.
Track four is a cover of Quartz’s “Stand up and Fight.” This one has a Seventies hard rock feel it. It is heavy, but in a Di Anno Maiden or 1970’s era Priest sort of way. “Stand up and Fight” ends the first chapter of the album.
The next chapter of Claw Tower is titled “The Beginning,” and showcases the band’s early days. This chapter starts with two tracks from their 2002 Demo. The guitars sound is very dirty on “Epicurean Mass.” Sometimes poor production hinders a demo’s sound, but not in this case. For this style of metal, the dirtier the guitar sound, the better. The same can be said about “Pierced by Cruel Winds.” The bass is amazingly heavy here, and the vocals are very depressing. Also, there is a creepy organ fuzzily played through a processor near the middle of the track. An acoustic guitar accentuates the morbid feeling of the organ, and is played until the end of the song, like drifting into a never ending sleep.
The second part of Chapter 2 highlights the 1999 Demo. “Sons of Nature” is introduced with a soothing acoustic guitar passage. Heavy riffs break up the lethargy to prove that nature can be both beautiful and destructive. The original version of “Creation of Death” is next. This track appears twice on this album, but rightfully so. The two versions contain the same riffs and lyrics, but the production, the vocal styles, and tempo all differ.
Orodruin stands out as one of the best bands in the Doom Metal genre which plays a breed of doom I love, slow and emotive.