11 Jun 2023 - Thorsten
Heavy Psych | Drone Metal | Trepanation Recordings | Release date: 23 Apr 2023 | Favorite song: Both!
What a summer this is – full of extremely good, ultra long tracks by Wallowing, Khanate, Bell Witch and Eremit. And now Orme with their two tracks on their self-titled record, one with 42 minutes and one with 54 minutes of running time. Even more astonishing than these lengths is the fact that not one minute is superfluous amid this Heavy Psych- and Post-Rock-influenced Drone Metal-hurricane!
[Disclaimer: Okay, let’s make one thing clear before continuing with this review: We do not review anything released by Trepanation Recordings just because Dan also writes for Veil of Sound. If we review something TR releases, then it’s because their releases this year have been utterly brilliant and that makes them front-runners for “Label of the Year” - I mean come on, just look at their releases this year: Terminal, UpCDownC, Wounds of Recollection, or KOLLAPS\E just to name a few artists they worked with this year!]
And now Orme, which to me might be the best release they had all year and which once again shows how close Trepanation is to the UK scene, which is sometimes overlooked which it should not! Orme are certainly outsiders within this scene, as they do not serve any Post-Metal or Blackened Hardcore vibes but rather a very unique blend of Psych-Rock and Drone Metal which tends to have a feeling for the ritualistic side of metal. That is a result of the highly repetitive nature of their music, for example when they embellish the hellishly charged, static noise at around the middle of the second track, ”Onward to Sarnath” with a female harmony (provided by Chea Griffin-Anker) that functions brilliantly and gives the track that little tiny whiff of world music to make it even better as it already is. These chants show that the track has no lyrical purpose but shall create a highly psychedelic experience as the two chanting harmonies are accompanied by an underlying growling and muttering which sounds like incantations. The shifting drums, the harsh noisey guitars, the lashing basslines – all of that makes this track a near-out-of-body-experience! If Dead Can Dance ever did a rowdy Metal-version of their music, it might sound like this.
Nevertheless, there is the other track, the shorter one, ”Nazarene” and this track teaches every wannabe-church-burner in the Black Metal community how spiteful, how detesting and how enraged an Anti-Christianity track can be. It doesn’t need tornadoes of swooshing guitar riffs, it should display its anger via words full of malice. ”Nazarene” bears its aim on its sleeve – this track does not try to mock Jesus Christ but it tries to destroy him by throwing bricks of hate at him. In some ways the track reminds of the beginning of Tarkovsky’s Sci-Fi classic Solaris because the first roundabout ten minutes of the movie are wordless, without any spoken monologues or dialogues. The same thing here with ”Nazarene” - it takes more than 10 minutes before we hear Tom Clements shout his anger at institutional Catholicism, and to give you an idea here are a few of his lines: ”Supreme God of Desolation, strengthen my purpose to save the world from a second ordeal of Jesus Christ and his rummy mundane creed. 2,000 years have been enough … You have failed, Nazarene, as you have always failed … while you were born of an impotent God I was conceived of a jackal born of Satan!”. In the further part of his rant he makes clear that he sees God and his creation of good and evil as the source of a lot of bad things in his world and that therefore the institution must be taken down. Some of you will say that this may be harsh, but then again, there is some truth in this.
The construction of both songs follows a certain regular Post-Rock pattern of winding up and up and up … but here it’s played with different musical means, it’s much more Drone, much more Noise, much more Industrial. When listening to this sound it’s a bit like Wallowing’s latest amazing offering named Earth Reaper, like a charged bastard between Noise and Drone but the vocals are not Black Metal-shrieks but rather Post-Punk’ish preachings. The tonality of the guitar lines is less Industrial, but rather Psychedelic, and nevertheless, both records are amazing in their own way and approach.
This is Orme’s astonishing debut album. It is pure (in)sanity. This is frighteningly good. It is one of the best records of the year. This is for sure.
A “teaser” video for an excerpt from “Nazarene”