On the journey to the violet heart of doom, next stop for John Gallo and the co. is Ruins of Eternity. 16 years after the previous full-length and seven years after the latest EP, Orodruin are here with their new offering.
Since early 2000s Orodruin from the USA have resided in the small intersection of Black Sabbath, Saint Vitus, and Paul Chain. Melancholic riffs with masterful keyboard touches made songs about personal sorrow, witchcraft, and …smashing goths. With limited material under their name, Orodruin earned a place amongst the best of the best doom metal acts on this side of 2000. After years of silence, they are back with their sophomore full-length, now even more personal than ever.
Musically the strong underlying foundation has not changed from the previous work: Sabbathian riffs played by beautiful guitar harmonies around the prevalent bass lines, tasteful guitar solos over galloping rhythms, and vocal lines over dark, moody, and melodic guitars. What’s immediately new over Epicurean Mass is that keyboards take a backseat this time around, perhaps after reaching the absolute beauty of key-driven second instrumental half of the title track on the debut album, they thought it was not fair to bring them again to the front. The second thing I noticed is Queens of the Stone Age-like rock tendencies manifesting themselves throughout the album, maybe more in some vocal melodies than the guitarwork, especially when the tempo speeds up ever so slightly. Mike Puleo’s silk-smooth vocal lines are as melodic and beautiful as ever and they do a great job at reflecting hopefulness and hopelessness just the same.
Ruins of Eternity is already available online to hear in full and it is officially coming out on the 25th of October from Cruz del Sur. Less out there than some other John Gallo outputs worshiping the weird side of Italian doom and more straightforward with the Sabbathian origins of traditional doom while maintaining the bleakness of Saint Vitus, this album contains both new songs and ones written all the way back in 2005 but it maintains a smooth flow of continuity rather than being a collection of individual singles.
The curtains fall after 47 minutes of straightforward traditional doom metal and we are left in the quiet darkness while the last words of Orodruin echo in the air:
If you ride the wind, ride it high
So far away, never to return to me
Don’t be afraid, we never die
Just sail across the ruins of eternity.
Album rating: 90/100
Favourite track: Voice in the Dark