[Review] Orationem – Pure Peace and Joy, Love and Kindness
Orationem – Pure Peace and Joy, Love and Kindness
Genre: Black Metal
NOTICE: Thomas Eversole provided me with a free download of this album on the condition that I review it. I will do my best to not let it affect my opinion of the music, nor will I allow my knowledge of him to affect it.
One of my biggest complaints with Fulfiller, Sustainer, Preserving Protector was its striking similarity to Orationem. The albums sounded practically identical. When Thomas first mentioned his new ideas for Pure Peace and Joy, Love and Kindness, I was understandably excited. A break from the repetition of the first two albums would be nice. The new elements that he added, such as the cello, were all very nice, but it’s still much similar to the first two albums than I hoped it would be. Thomas also mentioned that he would include some non-tremolo riffs, and I hoped that they would be very melodic, but they aren’t. They’re very low and chunky, reminiscent of his more death metal-inspired projects like Ankou Awaits. Fans of Sobrwydd a Disgyblaeth will find a lot to enjoy here.
The cello synth sounds great and I’m really glad that he added it. It’s used throughout most of the album and is sometimes slightly and intentionally out-of-sync with the music, creating a great effect. It changes the atmosphere a little bit, making the album as a whole feel somewhat different from the first two. The rest, however, feels almost entirely identical, except for the chunky guitars that I mentioned before. The production is the same and the growled vocals are the same. The drumming is unchanged (which I’m happy about, because Thomas is a great drummer) as well.
The actual quality of the music is just as good as it has always been, if not better. The riffs have ever so slightly improved with each album, and I hope that that continues. There’s more compositional variety in Pure Peace than there was in the previous albums too, so that greatly adds to my enjoyment. There are a lot of doomy and slow sections (which were entirely absent from the self-titled and only present on the title track of Fulfiller) which sound great. The one in the latter half of “Eternity with My Lord and Savior” is my favorite part of all three Orationem albums, and one of my favorite things that Thomas has ever written. It creates a brilliant feeling and is exactly what I was hoping for from this project. It also features a new spoken vocal style that sounds amazing and reminds me of the old Scepter of Blood days.
The ambience, which was the primary provider of atmosphere on the previous albums, has been changed on Pure Peace. The same ambient track is used at the end of each track (rather than a different one for each track), and the ambient sections are much shorter. Additionally, the ambience used is of lesser quality than it was on the first two albums, and the cello plays over it, which adulterates it in my opinion. The cello sounds great in the guitar-driven sections, but I think the ambience is best left on its own. Like I said, the actual quality of it is lower too. It sounds thinner and less complicated than it did on previous albums, and it just feels kinda dull.
Definitely an improvement over the previous two albums, but there is still so much potential here. If Thomas could create an Orationem album with the slow, doomy sections, cello, and spoken vocals of Pure Peace, the awesome riffs of all three albums, and the ambience of the first two, and add a little melody in there, that would be something truly legendary.
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