1. The Sign
  2. Black Magic Mirror
  3. Cold
  4. Prophecies of Fame
  5. Dead Ground
  6. My master's Master
  7. Back Gate
  8. In Slavery
  9. Truth or Lies
  10. Driven
  11. Infinity
  12. Addiction
  13. Beyond the Fall
  14. Ender's Game

Remko van der Spek - bass

Guus Eikens - guitars and vocals

Lasse Dellbrügge - keyboards

Rosan van der Aa - vocals

George Oosthoek - grunt vocals

Sureel - drums

ORPHANAGE : "Driven"       orphanage            Nuclear Blast

street date 13.04.2004

preview- review  by Francesco  Casale  ____    


What can i say about Orphanage?...I listen carefully to this new release and i was surprised at the various melodic changes of the single songs or sounds. A deep contrast between the evil-angelic voice of Rosan and the deep and heavy growl of Guus...leads the listeners to understand, with the "beauty and the beast" way, the various facettes among Gothic and Melodic Death slightly combined with excursions into Modern metal too.

The Sign is the first song...and opens the album with excellence...i talk about the contrast...opera female voice counterpoint the deep male growl...mixed with a rhythmic and obsessive guitar and a double bass drums....it’s difficult to hear the bass but with some concentration you can hear a little single note and some passages during the slow section of it....during the whole song in fact the bass is mixed together with drums creating a deep atmosphere.

The little intro of Black Magic Mirror reminds of the songs of an ancient circus and especially some Tim Burton’s atmosphere (you can listen to a film-machine noise too), then the song explodes with Guus...deep and slow, the sound then becomes mellow cause Rosan starts to sing.

Really interesting is the importance of the vocal part...sometimes (like the beginning of this song) the voice of Guus is more “important”...but if you reanalyze it after some minutes, you can say that the lead singer is Rosan...she plays with these changes of her “melodic part", which liven up the song.

An obsessive guitar starts in Prophecies of Fame...with a deep atmosphere...this develops in crescendo till Guus starts to sing, exploding with his voice but remaining more melodic than in the previous songs...a good drum playing from Sureel that works in "controtempo" (5/4 with double drums).

Rosan enters during the second section of atmosphere, making the sound round (i can’t explain but it seems that the melodic voice of Rosan transforms it in an unique sound).

Dead Ground is a great explosion of heavy and rhythmic guitar and drums that pursue closely the voice of Guus. In the middle enters the sweet voice of Rosan, immediately followed by the growl that repeats in an obsessive way “dead ground...dead ground”. This is one of the songs that appeal to me more, cause i can hear perfectly each component playing each instrument...making a single instrumental section that is built to be a whole sound.

Another song that represents more this album i think is Driven. Why ?, you may ask....well...in fact Driven is not similar to the other songs. During the album you can find a melodic line...a little format that is the core of each single song...but in Driven an unusual electronic atmosphere remains in all this song. Rosan starts to sing and immediately changes melody (in fact in the other songs it's quite a voice modulation...making different tones but remaining near her “line”), in fact maintains the melody line then change singing one tone below...the guitar follows her voice...an incredible sound is created, it’s slow...and deep as a painful crying.

The last four songs are a nice mix of powerful guitars and slow ballads...the right songs in order to close an album...one of the most beautiful is “Beyond the Fall”...a sad and wonderful ballad...where all the instruments create a single atmosphere that gives life to Rosan's voice....then a little change, angrier, and suddenly a calm sound...but maintaining the power of a low–tone guitar.


Impressions :

Sometimes this album is quite repetitive...i due this to the difficulty of joining together two different realities like Rosan and Guus. But i must say that in certain songs i can recognize the geniality of the single composition...where Rosan changes his melodic line joining the main tonality of the whole song.

Making a deep dissection of the single track i must say that each musical elements are edit with a special attention, especially the bass and the drum section. 

Rating: 7/10


Francesco Casale    

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