Chuck Schuldiner Project

Monday, November 3, 2014

Orphaned Land in Paris (@Le Divan du Monde 03/11/14)

One thing is for sure, Orphaned Land's entrance on stage had been a long time coming that evening. Indeed, after waiting at the doors under the pouring rain, we had been greeted with two local opening acts delivering desperately bland symphonic/gothic metal.

Right from the start with the Middle-eastern chants and the keffieh scarfs hanging from the mic stands, Orphaned land do not fail to stress their Israeli origins. However, as the frontman Kobi stated after pointing out the multiculturalism of the audience in the sold-out venue: "Fuck politics!"
Despite being known for their pacifist messages regarding the political turmoil in their homeland, the band quickly casts this aside; tonight is a communion under the anthem of heavy metal and a celebration of the 10th anniversary of their critically acclaimed album "Mabool", which will be played in its entirety within the context of a nicely balanced setlist.

Festivity was in the air tonight, with the frontman doing a few middle-eastern dances, the audience jumping and waving their arms at his request while loudly chanting along to the bands' repertoire with the highest level of enthusiasm.

The sound was precise all throughout the set, and every member was perfectly audible (even the bass guitar got itself a nice comfortable space in the mix, props to the sound guy). The lead guitar was crystal clear during the solo and lead sections and allowed us to fully appreciate the clean performance of Chen Balbus. The band delivered an airtight performance of middle-eastern influenced progressive metal, staying in place even during some of the occasional passages where the rhythmic sections went meshuggah (get it?).
The frontman effortlessly switched between singing beautiful middle-eastern clean vocals and raspy growls. The drummer was visibly in a playful mood today, as demonstrated by his many acrobatic drumstick tricks executed during the songs. On the other side of the stage however the rhythm section seemed to lack enthusiasm and/or energy on stage, with the bassist and rhythm guitarist barely ever moving the foot from the wedges.

Still, if the bands' longevity wasn't proof enough already, tonight Orphaned Land from Israel have yet again proven that they are more than a mere exotic novelty band.


Find them on facebook or on their official website:

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