Finland’s Ordog are a band already quite long-lived and capable of releasing, in 2011, a magnificent record like Remorse, an authentic monument to funeral doom. It seems much more time has passed since then, perhaps also because the band from Tornio followed up that work with a much more opaque test in 2014 (Trail For The Broken). In fact, it’s hard to think of passing, without suffering repercussions, from a proposal based on a granitic sound and slowed down to the extreme to a more catchy but basically inoffensive gothic, also because of the band’s own characteristics that sees a vocalist perfectly at ease with growl but rather lame when he’s struggling with clean vocals. The new The Grand Wall doesn’t bring back to the splendor of Remorse, whose unique feeling seems to be definitively no longer in the Ordog‘s ropes, but it shows a straightening of the bar towards a stylistic direction more suitable to the band. The album, in fact, offers a good series of tracks in which the gothic substrate is very well accompanied by a strong death doom component, and the return, albeit partial, to a matter that fits like a glove to the Finnish band does the rest, thus providing a completely satisfactory result. Just a track that mostly brings back to the death component, such as In The Looming Bitterness, shows some peculiarities, where a start that leaves little room to melody to offer free rein to a certain vehemence, is followed by a softening of the sound with the appearance, at times, of that Hammond that was able to make a difference in an epochal song such as the title track of Remorse. The Grand Wall has an enviable compactness and there’s really nothing wrong with it: each episode flows with good fluidity, with the peaks found in melodic and melancholic songs like Open The Doors To Red and The Perfect Cut, building a sound ensemble that will be appreciated by fans of the genre but, on the other hand, to fully succeed it is necessary to use as a term of comparison Trail For The Broken and certainly not Remorse or even more Life Is Too Short For Learning To Live. After all, Ordog‘s one has been a natural stylistic evolution similar to that of many other bands in the industry: it’s possible that those who love funeral in its most exasperated forms may not be completely convinced, but in the end it’s just a matter of evaluating the work based on what has been produced in the present, leaving the past aside as much as possible.
2016 – MFL Records