Finally they are back! It took some time to make the successor to "Mabool (2004)", but it was worth the wait. Orphaned Land needs no introduction for insiders and for what the band stands for. They live in probably one of the most difficult parts of the world, what makes it hard for them to operate and play live. The daily fear and anger, terrorist attacks, deadly victims and the Middle-East conflict give the band enough stuff to write about. The new album is a musical journey of hope in lands of war, creating heaven on earth, building a New Jerusalem.
The complicated situation in the Middle-East utters itself in the music. They spent over 600 hours in the studio cooperating with The Arabic Orchestra of Nazareth, using multilingual vocals (e.g. English, Hebrew, Arabic, Yemenite), countless Oriental as well as other traditional instruments such as: saz, santur, Arabian flutes, Middle-Eastern percussions, Cumbus, bouzouki, violins, various kinds of guitars and piano. They recruited Steven Wilson (Porcupine Tree, Opeth) to give this album the excellent production and mix necessary. Being present, Steven took care of the keyboards as well.
To get a grip on the album one should listen to it more than one time. Even after 10 spins there are still new things that come to ear. The oriental prog-metal with some death metal influences is very complex, but despite of the complexity, it sounds very natural. The heavy - soft ramble never sounds forced and the clean female vocals are in perfect combination with the harsh ones. The first hammer of 2010 in my opinion, this is an album for the open-minded prog-metal fan that digs some death metal parts and likes it complex.
The deep embedded hate between Muslims and Jews (and vice versa) will probably not disappear due to this album, but perhaps metal fans from both sides can be an example and join hands; banging and partying on "The Never Ending Way Of ORWarriOR". Perhaps this makes you think: no matter what you believe will happen after dying; we should all reckon with the fact that perhaps we already are in heaven (or hell) because we have already have lived a life before this one!
This is an album words hardly can describe, you need to experience it!