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Out of Order - Facing the Ruin

Out of Order
Facing the Ruin
by Gary Hernandez / Quinten Serna at 05 August 2019, 3:02 PM

Gary Hernandez

OUT OF ORDER
is Thrash/Power metal band out of Hassmersheim, Germany. In June this year they released their third full-length album, “Facing the Ruin.” If you had a metal spectrometer with Thrash metal on end and Power metal on the other, OUT OF ORDER would be right in the middle. As the band proclaims on their social media sites: “Against all trends, we only follow one doctrine: METAL! We don´t give a damn in what drawer you wanna squeeze us in. The only thing that matters is: IT ROCKS.” After listening to “Facing the Ruin,” I can’t disagree.

From first chords of “Watching You” to the last growl of “Apocalypse,” OUT OF ORDER delivers over 50 minutes of solid metal on “Facing the Ruin.” I am thrilled to report that there’s not a single ballad, acoustically rendered love song, or synthesizer infused instrumental. The closest they get to sentimentality is a guest appearance by Liv Christine (THEATRE OF TRAGEDY, LEAVES’ EYES, THE SIRENS) on “On the Rise,” and, as the title would suggest, this is not love song. In fact, “On the Rise” is one of the heaviest tracks on the album, a definite standout with Thorsten Braun stretching his vocal range to unexpected levels and Thomas Bauer and Sven Mittelstädt trading off riffs like sparks from a blacksmith’s hammer.

The downside to the album — and this is hard to ignore — is the heavy-handed political agenda that permeates every song. From clips of President George W. Bush to an interview with a sniper to spoken word narratives to a chorus from “Battle Hymn of the Republic” ("Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory"), “Facing the Ruin” is filled to brim with anti-war rhetoric. There’s nothing wrong with an anti-war stance, but ten songs of it wears thin. I mean you never really hear someone lauding the virtues of modern war; the fact that war is bad is a universally accepted stance. One song would have sufficed to get the point across, but as it is the overbearing lyrics undermine the incredible music. If you have the ability to ignore lyrics, then this might not be an issue for you.

With that said, the best tracks are the ones that hold back on the lecturing: “On the Rise,” “What for,” and “God is Angry.” Overall the album is good. Without the didactic lyrics, it would be fantastic.

Songwriting: 5
Originality: 5
Memorability: 4
Production: 8

Quinten Serna

Hailing from the underground German scene in the early 90s OUT OF ORDER is still going 28 years later, and while their style has evolved over the years the penchant and interest in Power Metal that defines their origins remains the same and is still as evident in the modern music as it ever was.

The album begins with the song “Watching You” an almost anthemic song coupled with reaching vocals and headbanging riffs with the song picking up in pace near the second half of the track and then abruptly slowing down for the break before the lead guitar erupts into a piercing solo. The whole of the song has about itself this eldritch feeling of unease and triumph, the tonality of the vocals piercing and cutting through the mix and harmonizing with the rhythm sections does well to build and add to the qualm sensation of mystique—the song then ends in abrupt measure with the instruments stringing together in a final bout of staccato as the vocals ring out with the motif “I’m watching you.”

The largest strength of this album is the versatility and diversity of each track, wherein each exists within its own realm creating its own rules and themes whereupon even as the vocals reference other songs such as "Sad But True" in “Watching You” or War Pigs in “Guilty” the songs still feel very much their own and the intensity, delivery, and construction separate each and every one in distinct virtue. With an album such as this it becomes difficult for one to choose a “favorite track” as each track is so unique in itself that they possess qualities and traits that others just do no emulate by any matter such as the vocal harmonies in “Self Deception,” the dynamics in “Tears,” the unity of “God is Angry,” and the harmonious approaches of “On the Rise.” Many of the melodies and rhythms come from different circuits of influence with some being almost baroque or classical and others being more direct and without question Speed Metal oriented.

The tracks themselves are crisp, clean, distinct, and incredibly well mixed with no instrument toppling over another in some vie for dominance. With an inclination towards the dynamic and versatile OUT OF ORDER creates an extremely distinct blend of different tones, ideas, and themes that are encapsulated within a single album. Any person bearing any interest towards Power Metal or just Heavy Metal in general would find this band incredibly inviting bearing both a distinct sound and large versatility in their writing, truly it is a rare occasion to come across a band such as this.

Songwriting: 10
Originality: 10
Memorability: 8
Production: 9

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Watching You
2. Self Deception
3. What For
4. The Sniper
5. Guilty
6. Tears
7. God Is Angry
8. On the Rise
9. Blood Vengeance
10. Apocalypse
Lineup:
Thorsten Braun - Vocals
Thomas Bauer - Guitar
Sven Mittelstädt - Guitar
Thomas Heinzmann - Bass
Michael Kapelle – Drums
Record Label: MDD / Black Sunset Records
     


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Edited 15 October 2019
 

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