|©2009 Violent Journey
2. Danjon Nolla
3. Kangastus 1968
4. Suuri Pää Taivaasta
5. Myöhempien Aikojen Pyhien Teatterin Rukoilijasirkka
6. Dub Kuolleen Porton Muistolle
7. Muukalainen Puhuu
8. Kerettiläinen Vuohi
It's hard to believe, but as a subgenre, black metal has been around for a couple decades now. Perhaps it's a sign of my own aging process, but it certainly takes a lot more than some cartoonish promo photos and some poorly recorded shrieking to pass for good black metal at this late juncture. What I find myself gravitating towards are bands that have elements of black metal and are able to combine them with a more unique or focused musical vision. Case in point is Finland's Oranssi Pazuzu, which combines space rock, reverberating psychedelic guitar, dub and black metal into a rather enjoyable twist on an old style. For purists, the band's association with black metal probably has more to do with what is in their record collection at home than actual execution of the style. In other words, outside of the harsh vocals, Oranssi Pazuzu may be as in touch with Scorn (assuming they let Dave Brock from Hawkwind have a suggestion box at the studio) as they are with Darkthrone.
Oranssi Pazuzu's style relies a lot on the usage of dynamics and finding ample space within their music. Unlike far too many of today's so-called extreme acts, they seem to have little interest in creating a wall of noise and a monotonous approach to music making. They feature plenty of echoing guitar leads that sound like they're bouncing off desert rock walls in the middle of the night as well as subtle bass lines that borrow plenty of from dub music. In fact, "Dub Kuolleen Porton Muistolle" namechecks the style and is probably the most enjoyable track on this debut. Rather than default into the typical "look at us, we're so intense" approach to metal, Oranssi Pazuzu finds a far more effective approach by the inclusion of atmospherics, and not by merely adding a keyboard player adding a backwash.
If you're seeking out something different from the run of the mill metal that is being incessantly churned out and favor tripping out over being pummelled by unimaginative acts, Oranssi Pazuzu's debut is definitely one of the more intriguing debuts I've heard in awhile.
Review by John Chedsey
Review date: 04/2011