THE ORDEAL Kings Of Pain (Mausoleum 2004)
The press release for this album states that The Ordeal mix classic metal
with modern industrial influences which sounds like an interesting concept
so on first listen itís initially disappointing to find that thereís very
little industrial influence to be found, and what little there is sits
uneasily with the rest of the music.
Repeated listening makes you aware of the quality of the majority of the
music and this is actually a very enjoyable listen, the riffs on songs such
as The Lion and Chained To The Dark have an almost Twisted Tower Dire
quality to them and the music is certainly more riff heavy and NWOBHM
influenced than the Rhapsody end of the Power Metal scene.
Singer Oliver Oppermanís voice is one of the bandís best features, always reaching and
keeping the notes he goes for and his slightly accented delivery actually
adds to the music and his performance is better than many better known
singers. Even the obligatory power ballad, Wings Of An Angel manages to be
an affecting paean to lost love and not the embarrassing Whitesnake esque
mess it could have been.
One minor quibble that I do have is that the tracklisting is in a completely
different order to what is printed on the CD sleeve, not a major problem by
any means, but possibly indicative of a lack of detail which stops this from
being the great album that it could have been.
Unfortunately the added electronics do somewhat spoil the overall effect, and Britainís own
Biomechanical do the Power/Prog/Industrial thing much more effectively but
this is well worth checking out if you get the chance.
Review by Neil Woodfin