Orphaned Land is a metal band from Israel. The main focus of this band has been the downright kooky idea of unifying people of Jewish, Muslim and Christian faiths. Yeah, that’s right. A metal band with a goal of peace in the Middle East. Suck on that, Jared Kushner. Next time someone tells you that metalheads are just a bunch of devil-worshiping troglodytes, you tell ’em to stick Orphaned Land in their pipe and smoke ’em. I’m not really sure what that means, but you get the picture.
Musically, you’ve got a mixture of traditional and death metal combined with traditional Middle-Eastern instruments and melodies. I love metal bands that come from non-traditional locales because they general bring some of their local flavor to the traditional tropes of metal and they create something wholly unique. Lyrically, the songs are fairly ambitious. The current album is an allegorical tale that cautions one against sitting on the sidelines when confronted with injustice and authoritarian regimes. So, you know, topical if you happen to live on Earth. I don’t think the new album quite lives up to Orphaned Land’s epic The Never Ending Way of the ORWarriOR, but it is definitely a stronger effort than their last release, All Is One. Added bonus on the album of notable guest spots by Blind Guardian’s Hansi Kursch, At the Gates’ Tomas Lindberg and Genesis guitarist Steve Hackett.
3.5 flip flops out of 5