Order Of Nine - Seventh Year Of The Broken Mirror

Order Of Nine - Seventh Year Of The Broken Mirror

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(CD, Nightmare Records, 2012)

When you search online for info about a band and see different genres describing the music then it’s often wise to dig deeper since this can be a really interesting case. And that’s exactly the case with the fourth full-length album by the US band ORDER OF NINE. A short web research revealed two genres for this band; Thrash and Power Metal. Strange mix you might think and you could not be more right. So, let’s see why...

From the self-titled album opener it becomes evident that this album has many layers that require additional time to reveal what is happening inside the music-composing mind of ORDER OF NINE. First of all, this track comes to strike out the Power Metal tag having a rather complex structure clearly flirting with the Progressive side of Metal. Michael Degrena possesses a unique timbre and I think can be the reason to either like or not this album even during the very first audition. In a futile attempt to describe his singing by mentioning references I’d go with a blend between Rhoy Khan (ex-KAMELOT) and Mark Shelton (MANILLA ROAD) while I wouldn’t exclude for this strange equation the name of Tom Englund from EVERGREY. You see, Michael has a strange sounding voice with many singing profiles giving the band the potential to establish a personal sound. And I think this is exactly what ORDER OF NINE have done constructing the songs around the vocals. Musically, one can justify the Power Metal tag by mentioning the scattered galloping rhythms and sing-along melodies while revealing some early BRAINSTORM influences. But the album goes beyond the rather restricted boundaries of Power Metal building a hearty dark atmosphere mainly via the keyboards that touch the EVERGREY sound like in the album’s highlight “Dreamspeak”. If you see past the rather over-used fast guitar rhythm section, you will enjoy the singing and the background keys that personally I’d like to see them one step forward in the mix and not that buried in the back.

There is no doubt that this album has more to offer than the accompanying music tags imply. "Seventh Year Of The Broken Mirror" features a thick dark atmosphere that can be stretched to touch an almost Gothic character the keyboards often throw on the mix. The guitar work is complex but not that much and hence does not exceed my inner fuse that burns out whenever a guitar tab looks like a smudge being overloaded with riffs upon riffs upon melodies... The album’s dark atmosphere does not exclude the heaviness present in tracks like “Changing Of The Guard”, “Third Wish” or the guitar-driven “Twelfth Talisman”.

If you like music that cannot be described with a bunch of music tags and requires additional auditions to sink in then the new ORDER OF NINE is for you. But if you want your Metal plate clearly defined without surprises, then move on; there are a lot of bands out there to please this need.





01. Seventh Year Of The Broken Mirror
02. Words That Were Said
03. Dreamspeak
04. Spiral Staircase
05. Changing Of The Guard
06. Innocence
07. Third Wish
08. Eye Of The Enemy
09. Twelfth Talisman
10. Reign Down
11. Winter's Call


Mark Howard - Bass
Larry Boord - Drums
Mark Kreh - Guitars
Steve Pollick - Guitars
Chris Dillon - Keyboards
Michael Degrena - Vocals