Rating:
8.0
Ortega - A Flame Never Rises On Its Own [EP]
1 February 2012


01. When Fire Meets Fire
02. The Entity
03. Ritual


Just in time to request an old school (spool?) cassette copy under your Festivus Pole, Ortega are back with a tangible release of their early 2012 EP, A Flame Never Rises On Its Own.

This release, when held up to the awesome benchmark set by 1634, initially falls a bit short for two reasons.

First is it is an EP, which presents us within the obvious shortcoming… there are only three songs. While the EP might clock in at almost 30 minutes, it still is nearly 20 minutes short of the predecessor. 40% less Ortega is like, well, grabbing a six pack to find two beers missing.

Of course 4 beers > 0 beers, just like new Ortega music > no new Ortega. That's just basic math, folks.

Second is the limitation of an EP once again compared against a full-length. 1634 had a concept, ebbed, flowed, swelled, and developed as it went along. It was like a sonic short story. "An Old Man And The Sea", only without the Joe DiMaggio references. (Although Hemingway probably singlehandedly drank as much in the creative process of the short story as the band did in the studio during the recording process.) A Flame… is more a collection of three separate and unconnected songs.

So this probably reads like the EP is a disappointment.

Not at all.

This is, as stated above, new Ortega, which means it is still great music. The band showcase the various attributes shoved under the large Post Big Top. During "The Entity" they play a doomish-tinged melodic instrumental style post metal. The tribal pounding and slow burn development of "Ritual" engross the listener. Closing track "When Fire Meets Fire" has, at times, the almost organic-yet-mechanized bludgeoning assault of Process of Cult Of Luna punctuated with howled vocals.

They also construct songs to allow for build and release. Moments of increasing or prolonged intensity fall to Mellow Moments ™ before regrouping and continuing the assault. Shifting the approach helps keep seven to 10 minute tracks engaging.

I'm not sure how they do it - for an unsigned band* they sound amazing. Everything has a balance and depth that just makes the music enveloping. At times it's like laying in the ocean and letting the gentle surf float you along. At other times it bludgeons you like a storm surge.

If you have a hankering for a hunk of post-doomsludge, by all means, it's time to visit bandcamp.

Off you go.

*So amazing that Metalsucks acknowledged them last month in their "Unsigned and Unholy" entry. Of course, I was extolling their virtues some time earlier, thanks to Marcel hooking me up. Welcome aboard the good ship Ortega, other MS. First round is on me.

Performance: 8
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Production: 9


Band profile: Ortega
Album: A Flame Never Rises On Its Own


 



Written on 05.12.2012 by
BitterCOld
BitterCOld has been officially reviewing albums for MetalStorm since 2009.
More reviews by BitterCOld ››



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Guib - 05.12.2012 at 23:05  
Awesome review Bitter, Im definitely going to listen to this... right about now.

EDIT: Awesome sound, I love it, Thanks alot Bitter.
Marcel Hubregtse - 05.12.2012 at 23:27  
A cassette copy of this e.p.? Good luck finding it since it's limited to 20 copies

gatefold vinyl version (the artwork works great there and is actually pretty stunning, although it doesn't come across as such when you look at it here in the review) is probably still available.

So, go to their bandcamp and download Ortega's awesome music.
BitterCOld - 05.12.2012 at 23:31  
Written by Guib on 05.12.2012 at 23:05

Awesome review Bitter, Im definitely going to listen to this... right about now.

EDIT: Awesome sound, I love it, Thanks alot Bitter.


They also have another (18 minute) track, The Serpent Stirs available on bandcamp.. Even more good stuff.
Guib - 05.12.2012 at 23:32  
Written by BitterCOld on 05.12.2012 at 23:31

Written by Guib on 05.12.2012 at 23:05

Awesome review Bitter, Im definitely going to listen to this... right about now.

EDIT: Awesome sound, I love it, Thanks alot Bitter.


They also have another (18 minute) track, The Serpent Stirs available on bandcamp.. Even more good stuff.


Haha I just finished listening to it Simply wonderful.
Marcel Hubregtse - 05.12.2012 at 23:34  
A Serpent Stirs is still available on cassette limited to 100 copies released by Tartarus, which is a cassette only label run by Ortega's guitarist/vocalist Richard Postma
Kuroboshi - 06.12.2012 at 08:25  
"Process of Cult of Luna"

Haha, awesome!
Merchant of Doom - 06.12.2012 at 11:01  
Good stuff! Highly recommended.
Boxcar Willy - 06.12.2012 at 14:53  
Love this, Need to pick me up some merch when I'm not poor. Nice Review.
Merchant of Doom - 07.12.2012 at 11:49  
Written by Guest on 06.12.2012 at 11:08

Written by Merchant of Doom on 06.12.2012 at 11:01

Good stuff! Highly recommended.

hehe,if the.. its not doom.. police says its good, am definitely checking this out
:-P



I never said "it's not doom"... just the wrong definition of it...

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