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(50:14; Nuclear Blast)
This 50-minute long album is not for the faint-hearted as Finnish Act Oranssi Pazuzu create something which is experimental, dark, and to be honest just plain weird. This is their fifth album since they came together in 2007, and their name is taken from “Oranssi”, meaning “orange” in their native Finnish language (the colour of cosmic energy) and “Pazuzu” is the ancient Mesopotamian demon of the wind. So, they are orange cosmic demons of the wind, maybe. For the most part they are combining post rock and atmospheric black metal in a manner which also uses both space rock and krautrock, and while Neurosis are a point of reference so are many others such as Swans. It is eccentric and experimental, yet while there are passages which do make sense there are plenty of others where it feels like the band is just treading water with no emotional build or direction. The production is deliberately cloudy, and although the bass stands out the guitars tend to fall into a buzz saw background, while the black metal vocals sound as if they have come from the early Nineties as opposed to the present day. One of the issues I have with it is down to the choice of keyboard sounds, as there are times when it sounds as if they have been sampling Eighties games and it just comes across as twee as opposed to threatening or exciting and does nothing to move the music in a positive direction. I do get the impression, certainly when they move far more into standard black metal territory, that they are quite a different beast in concert, and while I can see myself checking them out if they were in town, listening to this again for pleasure is another matter altogether. Reading the biography this band ticks a lot of boxes for me, so I was looking forward to it, but the overall result is too messy, with a lack of direction.
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