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Orodruin > Claw Tower ...and Other Tales of Terror > Reviews > Lord_Elden
Orodruin - Claw Tower ...and Other Tales of Terror

Mixed Bag of Old & New Stuff - 70%

Lord_Elden, October 24th, 2006

I'll start with saying that Orodruin's debut album Epicurean Mass was near perfection delivering the miserable bells of doom upon our lost souls. Really a mindblowing record of Traditional Doom Metal. If you're awaiting similar stellar material from Claw Tower you're bound to be disappointed. Why? Because Claw Tower is just a compilation of old demos, a cover song and a little bit of new material.

So, what does Claw Tower offer exactly? Epicurean Mass and Pierced by Cruel Winds (the order on the booklet seems to be wrong switching the titles of track 5 and 6) are earlier demo versions of songs that already appeared on the debut. And I must agree with the nice four page booklet included with the album: the vocals aren't nearly as good as those provided on the debut. And that's not the only problem, the production is also worse and they don't generally feel as complete as on the album. Two somewhat inferior versions of songs from the debut with other words. Still interesting for the die-hard fans to hear these versions. Also included is the demo from '99. Here's a surprise, the two songs Sons of Nature and Creation Through Death are less Doom Metal and has more of this NWOBHM influenced Heavy Metal going on. Not stellar masterpieces but again interesting for fans of the band. Then there's the cover of Quartz' song Stand Up and Fight which perhaps could explain the NWOBHM sound of the early demo. As almost always the case with cover songs: the original is superior. Besides these there's a "live" version of the song Unspeakable Truth, I prefer the version on the debut but this version gives evidence of the tight musicianship of the band. Furthermore, there's a re-recorded version of the demo song Creation Through Death. The last track is what the booklet calls an early incarnation of Epicurean Mass entitled Deity of Wrath, it has some interesting church chanting but it feels rather half-baked spinning only for ca 2 minutes (then there's silence for 4 minutes, after that follows a clip of 20 seconds from the earlier Quartz song plus some laughter) rendering the track more or less useless. As for new material, there's one song (the first track) called Claw Tower. The song is a solid piece of Traditional Doom similar to the style on the debut.

For die-hard fans of the band it's worth to pick up this compilation to hear the '99 demo and the new track. Others should acquire Orodruin's debut instead.

(Originally written for under the moniker KingBizarre)