Order Ogan - Gunmen

Order Ogan Gunmen cover
Order Ogan
AFM Records
It’s funny how sticking to your gun for 20 years during which you release six albums with “little” fanfare, can turn you “big” by relative terms.
Order Ogan is a second if not third rate Blind Guardian clone, with lots of orchestrations and very simple song structures that relies more on layered choruses and production than raw talent to build songs, but I suppose touring relentlessly has its perks as does owning a studio (as their singer does, where a good bunch of their company’s bands seem to record)…
“Gunman”, despite the over the top “orchestral” overtures that try to impress, is a very basic track, which also feels very derivative in the “I’ll find you, I’ll hunt you” line… you know what I’m talking about… and vengeance is my name? Has this been created with random power metal lyrics generator? Please…
“Fields of Sorrow” is better, with some riffing, audible, but the repetitiveness is really not helping it, while the “Guardianesque” chorus could have used a better, cleaner and more powerful lead vocal, but it’s “bearable” I guess, while the solos fare a bit better, before some random and indistinguishable “folk” break comes in – for variety effect...
“Forlorn and Forsaken” is copying more recent BG standards, which are lower with an almost forced melody on the chorus and little else to talk about other than some riffs and a semi decent lead… correction more than adequately decent one.
“Vampire in Ghost Town” has as much charm past it’s opening riff than any of those Owe Boll movies – maybe it’s actually inspired from one of those “Bloodrayne” movies where the Vampyre goes to the wild west to hunt cowboys… the folk laden melodies and massively generic power metal might impress RPG nerds and drunk people at fests, but this is deffo second rate, lazy songwriting…
“Come with me to the Other Side” (feat. Liv Kristine) and while Levermann tries his best on this number in no small part aided a great deal by LK in the parts where she sings, the whole thing feels quite disjointed, a bit like a BG bastard reject that might have worked with a bit more effort. Still it’s probably one of the better moments on the album.
“The Face of Silence” keeps the formula unchanged, multilayered choruses and all and while it has some nice hints, there’s a lot of recycling of parts to take it past five minutes. It works in this case, because of the nice melody in the chorus, but it’s not like that in all cases in the album and it shows a lazy “copy-paste” mentality and little imagination in terms of composition.
In “Ashen Rain” Levermann tries to prove he can sing, with the lead vocals protruding and the choruses not coming in until midway through. It’s decent and one of the good moments, even if it’s riffing is a generic as it could be.
“Down Here” is more overblown orchestrations, layered and clichés and I honestly caught myself yawning, which is not a good thing, c’mon you know the feeling… this feels like one of those uninspired Turilli 10 minute opuses where there’s a ton of things going on – but nothing really to focus on, or “really” like… and I kinda like Turilli even with all the cheese topping.
“One Last Chance” is probably the last chance of the album to redeem itself, but just passes by – as generic as you would expect sounding as anything else on the album – in the sense that it feels interchangeable… the same dull, lifeless riffing, the same “layered choruses” the same melodies, pulled and bent out of shape to fit the lyrics… just bad, plainly bad.
And what album is complete without some latin cliché BS? “Finis Coronat Opus” just addresses that concern. It is a little more bearable, than the usual fare of the band, a rare in which they almost do their Blind masters justice… just not with the best chorus they could come up with as the latin semi-chanted atrocity here is not exactly a sing-along… close but no cigar… maybe a leaf-pipe?
If you absolutely must have your Blind Guardian fix, these guys can work as a placebo, but… really they feel charmless, repetitive and most of all derivative. They might have perfected the “copy” but songwriting is another art in itself...