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Orthrelm - OV CD (album) cover

OV

Orthrelm

 

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.14 | 16 ratings

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Smegcake!
4 stars A radical departure from their previous work and most likely the most challenging. For me, it feels as if it is the anti-thesis of prog music in a way - despite the progressions in the music, they come after indefinite periods of time, where most of the record feels it is spent in an almost endless loop of minimalist repetition, played over and over and over again, yet placed in the strange and uncharted territory of minimalism; loud rock music. I doubt this will ever be replicated, as it is noisy, abrasive, seemingly endless, and quite honestly, hard to enjoy at times. At other times however, it is almost hypnotic, though there is always the noise acting to distance and disorient any sense of calm or peace one may associate with hypnotism. Running the mammoth length of 45:43, the single song album represents the pinnacle of challenging music, strictly for those whom wish to tap the deepest pits of challenging music. It reminds me of Naked City's controversial album, Leng Tch'e, based on the concept of the chinese torture method of 'death by a thousand knives'. That album's concept was to create a soundscape to replicate that ordeal from the perspective of the victim, and in that respect, I could appriechiate and admire the work, albeit distantly. Its short length ensured it did not overstay its welcome, however bleak and nihilistic it was. Here however, OV represents a minimalist concept that I find to be both alien and familiar. It builds off of familiar ground, repetitions which act to reinforce and build upon themselves to entice the audience into a lull. However, Orthrelm does not progress 'naturally' with OV, instead, pulling the carpet from under the audience every few minutes to begin with, as soon as the pattern begins to be settling as a flowing repetition, a split moment interval segues into a new, unexpected pattern which continues again, forcing the listener to orient their attentions to the piece once again. TO conclude. This is harsh, tough stuff people. Like Leng Tch'e, I appriechiate the concept. It is successful, I feel it will unlikely ever be repeated again, in rock, or music in general. Because of that, it is a standalone piece, unique and thus, worthy of four stars. Whenever you need a reminder of how far post-modernism has pushed the music as an artform, look no further then OV. Just remember, it's a long, hard trip to revisit more then once. Even once may be too much for some of you.
Smegcake! | 4/5 |

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