Genus Ordinis Dei
Company: Mighty Music
Reviewer: Greg Watson
Italy's Genus Ordinis Dei (GOD for the acronym) self released deubt album, "The Middle" sees larger distrubtion due to Mighty Music and the album doesn't disappoint! Meaning "kind of God" in Latin, GOD offers up symphonic death metal that possesses both bite and beauty, giving the album a very contrasting approach with blast beats and crunchy riffs overlaid with lush symphonic soundscapes. The sound works incredibly well together. The songs are a fascinating blend of heaviness and symphonic elements that totally engage the listener. The guitar work is very melodic at times, almost having a power metal sort of feel to their sound during the solos with the riffs having heavier distortion for that extra beef that death metal songs have. The symphonic arrangements are incredibly well done and mesh with the death metal in a way that accentuates the style rather than try to compete with or overshadow it. I find myself going from moments of full out rage with the death metal sound to moments of introspection and awe when the symphonic moments take the spotlight. Vocalist and guitarist Nick K has a really solid death rasp and his guitar work, along with that of second guitarist Tommy Mastermind, is an incredible blend of aggressive and melodic playing. What really impresses me overall with the album though is the fact that the symphonic pieces are simply breathtaking and so well orchestrated that they don't feel out of place at all with the blast beats and growls. Take for instance the track "My Crusade". This one starts out with just a monster riff that lays waste to all in its path and then has this great layered keyboard riff come in to supplement it and then blast beat drumming comes in with some melodic guitars. As the song progresses, the symphonic arrangement matches the music in intensity and pace. It's one of the most interesting listens I've had in a while and the freshest sound I've heard in a genre that really doesn't do much with pushing the envelope on ingenuity and creativity. I highly, highly recommend this album and am stoked to know that there is an EP coming down the pike later this year. Mighty Music have hit another one over the fence with this band!
About this Writer:Greg Watson
// Greg Watson has been hooked on the loud and heavy sounds since the summer of 1994 when he first heard the opening notes of "Operation: Mindcrime" by Queensryche. Since then his tastes have expanded and grown like the ever evolving heavy metal tree of genres. He has been an active member of Maximum Metal off and on for 10 years. In his spare time, Greg enjoys deciding the fate of his loyal subjects in the realm of Skyrim and secretly playing air keyboard to "Separate Ways" by Journey when no one is watching. He currently resides in Roanoke, VA with his wife and his metal wannabe beagle.