Year of release: 2020
Released by: The Sinister Flame
Rating: 7,9 / 10
Providing me with the promo for the second album of the Finns ORDINANCE, he publisher strongly advised me to pay close attention to it, modestly declaring: "After all, this is the best Black Metal album in recent years." Such claims, of course, should not go unpunished, so I listened carefully to the album several times before writing the review.
What can I say - I disagree with the “best”, but the album is really very good. This is, let's say, a modern version of classic Black Metal; a style that many are trying to master, but only a few manage to break out of mediocrity. ORDINANCE did, but not everyone will notice. The press release notes that the group is completely devoid of show-off and prefers to just do their job. This is true, and this applies not only to the image, but also to the music. There are no hooks and fragments written specifically for concerts. ORDINANCE has good dynamics, but not for the wide / live audience. This is an elaborate use of many standard solutions. It is based on blast beats and tremolo, but each track has something unique. For example, the song “Gathering Wraiths” excites the imagination with alternating solo and rhythm guitars, and its predecessor etches with a semi-acoustic track over the main guitars. Contrary to the laws of building music albums, the further the group goes, the more interesting it becomes. The first two tracks evoke associations with a typical Finnish sound a la BEHEXEN, HORNA and CLANDESTINE BLAZE (hoarse vocals), but then INQUSITION, NIFELHEIM and other devilry begin to be quoted. The instruments make very unusual moves, guitars especially. All transitions are very smooth and harmonious. Sometimes the Finns play in the manner of Belarusian DOWNCROSS, and their music is also dominated not by the cold Darkness, but by the Luciferian Light. All songs have a characteristic solemn atmosphere and openness, not reminiscent of the claustrophobic blackness of the early 90s.
The disadvantages of the album can be attributed to its slight protraction. The group didn't have enough good ideas to fill 50 minutes. There is exactly one song (5-6 minutes) of mediocre material. Throw it out and everything will be much better. But now it's too late to talk about it. One way or another, the album is very solid, and I can safely recommend it to those who like the modern sound of Black Metal, not divorced from the traditions of the genre. This also applies to the satanic lyrics here.