Up to this point, the greatest contribution to music Dartmouth, Nova Scotia has given the world was Cutting Crew guitarist Kevin MacMichael. Orchid’s Curse is trying to change that. Since their inception in 2005, Orchid’s Curse has continually evolved in their sound and become one of Canada’s finest underground metal bands. Orchid’s Curse has always been labeled a progressive metal band and they continue to push the envelope of progressive on their new album, “Words”, released on Diminished Filth Records, March 26, 2013.
“Words” is filled with up tempo, staccato riffed bangers with the vocals gruffly being yelled over the top. This sound seems to be a theme on most of the songs on the record. It opens with shot to the face courteous of the track ‘Baptismalpractice’. Starting with a galloping drum beat and screaming vocal, the track settles in to a punishing pace with some heavy riffs. Some hardcore influence is sprinkled in with a solo breakdown. ‘For Those Who Grovel’ keeps the pressure up with more machine gun riffs and bellowing, yelled vocals.
The drum sound on the album is like a stampede of buffalo, hurtling towards you, sounding your impending doom. A great example of this is in the beginning of ‘Lie to Live the Lie’, one of the more straight up metal cuts on the album. Orchid’s Curse does a good job of melding other genres into their already heavy mix of metal, hardcore, and ultra-heavy punk. A pair of mostly instrumental tracks, the title track and ‘Provisions for a Journey’, combine a slow sludge interlude that grows to a cool stoner metal ditty before you are thrown back into the brutality of ‘Through the Hourglass’. Orchid’s Curse even touches on a little metalcore on ‘His Servants’, one of the few mid-tempo songs on the album. Check out the odd dissonant harmonized guitar solo towards the end.
Overall “Words” is heavy hitting album full of great riffs, thunderous drumming, and some interesting production queues. The songs are a little light on melody, but when they are delivered with this level of passion and ferocity, it makes up for it. Orchid’s Curse band motto is “Beer, Beards, and Heavy Metal”. With that kind of motto, I would expect nothing less.