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The Order – Out Of Order

The Order
Out Of Order
by Mark Machlay at 16 November 2021, 3:52 PM

After being unable to tour due to the worldwide pandemic following the release of their current studio album “Supreme Hypocrisy”, Swiss rockers THE ORDER decided to use their downtime to create acoustic versions of five of their older songs and released the appropriately titled “Out of Order” in late August of this year. The group was founded in 2005 by guitarist Bruno Spring, drummer Mauro Casciero, bassist Andrej Abplanalp, and singer Gianni Pontillo with members from Bern, Basel and Zurich. Spring, Casciero and Abplanalp have played together in various bands over the past 20 years, including the Basel crossover band GURD and the Bernese metal combo JERK. They have played concerts in Switzerland, Germany, and Italy as part of the line-up of THE ORDER while supporting bands such as WASP, SHAKRA and Y&T among others. The band has received the unfortunate reputation as being perceived as Pontillo’s side project or Spring’s solo project but the band members have shot down any of those rumors seeing THE ORDER as an independent band, independent of the members’ other projects and groups.

THE ORDER has had quite the decade and a half of a career, releasing 6 full-length albums before releasing their first EP of acoustic covers of their material. There seems to have been a line-up change since their previous album as original bassist Abplanap seems to have departed with Alain Schwaller announced as their new bassist on August 1, 2020. It seems like it may have been extra fallout after the cancelling of their small tour to promote their previous full-length album “Supreme Hypocrisy” which got really good reviews and reached the highest chart position in the band’s history. But I always appreciate when a band can re-imagine their own songs without the need for another band to make a cover before we see a song in a different light. Apparently, the idea to record acoustic versions of their songs was a long gestating idea and they finally had the time to sit down and bang it out. Notably, the EP was recorded by new bassist Schwaller at Addicted Audio Studio in Pratteln, Switzerland. It was produced by the band, mixed and mastered by V.O. Pulver at Little Creek Studios in Ormalingen, Swizterland with cover artwork by Jan Yrlund and Darkgrove Design.

For a band that isn’t known for tender ballads and leans into a bit of a rougher sound, THE ORDER’s attempts at acoustic versions of some of their classic songs on “Out of Order” tend to still have a bit of an edge, providing a nice little interlude between albums/live shows. You’ve got two slower tracks in the middle with “Endlessly” and “Love Ain’t a Game to Play” acting as the pseuo-power ballad since it still features heavy drums and lots of production with layered vocals and double-tracked guitars. These two were an interesting experiment but all it did was make me long for the originals with all the frill and bombast that the electric version offers. On the other hand, the other rocking toons take on a bit of bluesy or jazzy feel when brought into the acoustic environment and really made me enjoy them in a whole new light. “Mama. I Love Rock ‘N’ Roll”, in particular, had this really nice swing and colorful, playful feel to it that was less present in the electric version. I enjoyed this stripped-down version of some of THE ORDER’s past tracks and I’m it will surely whet fan’s appetite’s for their inevitable return to the live stage.

Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 7
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Mama, I Love rock ‘n’ Roll (Acoustic Version)
2. Endlessly (Acoustic Version)
3. Love Ain’t a Game to Play (Acoustic Version)
4. Sweet Stranger (Acoustic Version)
5. Save Yourself (Acoustic Version)
Lineup:
Gianni Pontillo – Vocals
Bruno Spring – Guitars
Alain Schwaller – Bass
Mauro Casciero – Drums
Record Label: Massacre Records
     


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