Wednesday, 13 September 2017

ALBUM REVIEW: Order - "Lex Amentiae"

By: Ernesto Aguilar

Album Type: Full-length
Date Released: 28/07/2017
Label: Listenable Records


 




This is harsh, in-your-face, old-school black metal. From the opener "Winter" onward, Order stakes a claim to the thorny crown with its barbarous shrieks, lumbering bass and unyielding guitars.


"Lex Amentiae" CD//DD//LP track listing:

1. Winter
2. Prophet
3. Torquemada
4. Dugma
5. Procreation (of the wicked)
6. Victimized
7. Folly Grandeur
8. Order

The Review:

Order clearly cares little about doing itself favors to the first-time listener. Before even kicking into the first song, you'll already know its members claim a lineage going back to the original wave of Norwegian black metal as well as the region's important death metal scene. If that's not enough to make you take note, its players have done time in a host of groups you know and love, including Celtic Frost, Mayhem, Gluecifer, Cadaver and Satyricon. And this is not just some dude who joined the group in Lineup Version 245; we're talking drummer Kjetil Mannheim and Eirik Norheim, of the original 1980s' Mayhem with the late Øystein "Euronymous" Aarseth. It is the squad that literally defined the Nordic black metal sound. Serious O.G. cred, for real.

The question remains, how is a fresh Norwegian black metal act with a debut recording gonna even come close to that sort of pedigree?

Fortunately enough for the members of Order, they know what they do and do it well.

On its 2017 release "Lex Amentiae" (roughly translated to 'law of insanity'); Order jumps out with a classic black metal boom. No subtle string arrangements. No imagery of trees, candles and crows. This is harsh, in-your-face, old-school black metal. From the opener "Winter" onward, Order stakes a claim to the thorny crown with its barbarous shrieks, lumbering bass and unyielding guitars. It's a refreshing sound, given how amazing the band sounds together and the number of black metal variations we have right now. But far from a throwback or novelty, Order feels original and invigorating in metal.

Nearly two generations have passed since these guys birthed what many a corpse painted youngster have sought to do. In songs such as "Procreation (Of the Wicked)," Order make it clear they still have more music in them, and lessons to teach the new kids. There is an undeniably quintessential black metal ethos. Such a paradigmatic take may thus make finding new influences harder. Yet, there is a maturity to the music many new bands can learn from and be pushed by to test themselves as well.

In recent interviews, Mannheim has remarked the album itself is in concept intended to address humanity's willingness to choose belief over facts, and to side with authoritarians and monsters, through scourges such as religion. That sort of social commentary in black metal has been hard to pull off, though the critique of religious faith is quite familiar. Cuts like "Order" draw an uncompromising parallel between religion and fascism, with the most audible, spoken-word-style lyrics of all the songs. It is a somber close to one of the subgenre's more provocative new releases.

"Lex Amentiae" is available here




Band info: facebook

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