"Inside" (Nuclear Blast; 2000)

Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter

Upon first listen, Orphanage's "Inside" will sound like Samael combined with My Dying Bride, Lacuna Coil and Pink Floyd, with crushing modern grooves. Intrigued? I certainly was. After a long hiatus Orphanage finally released their new material to widespread anticipation.

Don't let Orphanage's decidedly European style scare you away from exploring what this Dutch band has to offer. Orphanage manages to attack their songs with equal attention from their disparate elements into a cohesive whole; Orphanage's overall mid-paced doom/death style has matured and is quite easy to digest.  Each song gives the CD an insistent push over the boundaries of high expectations.  Orphanage blend pulverizing guitars, pounding bass, dexterous keyboards, and tug-of-war vocals in a balanced counteroffensive that overwhelms the emotional core of the listener.

The vocals are presented in a similar vein to Lacuna Coil and Theatre Of Tragedy; Orphanage echo the yin and yang of the male-female vocals of the aforementioned bands in a manner that is more like dialogue than simple sung words.  The lyrics contend with (among many other topics) the self-warfare of the psyche, uncertainty in dealing with modern society, and the end of the world.

"Inside" is definitely worth checking out!  Orphanage are destined to be yet another European band that I'll have to wait patiently for them to tour the United States. 

"Inside" was produced and mixed by Orphanage.

Orphanage is Lex Vogelar on guitars and vocals; Guus Eikens on keyboards, guitars, and vocals; George Oosthoek on grunts and screams, Rosan van der Aa on vocals, Erwin Poldermann on drums, and Eric Hoogendoorn on bass.  Sharon den Adel makes a guest appearance on "Behold."

For more information visit http://www.orphanage.net.

Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2003 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 11 Sep 2022 14:16:13 -0400.