Album Review: Oranssi Pazuzu – Mestarin kynsi (Nuclear Blast)

Uncovering the intensity and the metal inherent in non-metal, the avant-garde and anti-traditionalist inclinations of Finland’s Oranssi Pazuzu have always had transcendental goals at heart.

As “Oranssi”, meaning “orange” in their native Finnish language, is the colour of cosmic energy and “Pazuzu” is the ancient Mesopotamian demon of the wind, their swirling kaleidoscope of psychedelia has blown through the underground to redefine boundaries ever since their inception in 2007.

Through the rabbit hole and out the other side to 2020 with the release of their fifth album “Mestarin kynsi”, (“The Master’s Claw”). Oranssi Pazuzu subvert the idea of world domination to open a conceptual discourse on indoctrination and propaganda itself. Their psychological nightmare evolves a philosophical and earnest tone, where occult future meets troubled reality.

Mestarin kynsi is out on April 17th 2020 via Nuclear Blast.

The cold Northern wind blows from Mestarin kynsi as Oranssi Pazuzu deliver a disheartening and at times, uncomfortable black metal release. There is no warmth to be found here, something Ilmestys makes so very clear from the start. It might be more melody driven but that melody is not one that warms the soul. It has so much threat about it, a warning of things to come made all the more ancient sounding when the gargling vocals arrive.

Each track, all six of them, is built on a foundation of bleakness and for a decent portion, Oranssi Pazuzu barely raise its voice to anything more then a growl. The discomfort is felt even more so when eerie effects arrive on Tyhjyyden sakrame. However it is here where things do intensify and that growl becomes a shout, a very old-school and dark black metal shout.

Defying all expectations, Uusi teknokratia has this wacky mix of playful rhythm and horrifying black metal noise. Before the deliciously dark Oikeamielisten sali arrives with sounds of confusing beauty. Not speaking a word until the final minutes of its near 8 minute run time.

If your mind hasn’t been shattered into pieces by the eclectic nature of this album yet, Kuulen ääniä maan will do it. The buzz of electronics, the repetitive beat, the gurgle of vocals and then it just erupts in an orgy of ferocity.

There’s almost a sense of relief that Taivaan portti singles the end. Choosing to avoid the slower and more scaled back approach of most of the other tracks for a furnace blast from the start. A piece of savage destruction that wants nothing more then to have you howling and screeching in the darkness.

Oranssi Pazuzu – Mestarin kynsi Full Track Listing:

1. Ilmestys
2. Tyhjyyden sakrame
3. Uusi teknokratia
4. Oikeamielisten sali
5. Kuulen ääniä maan
6. Taivaan portti


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  • Carl Fisher

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Oranssi Pazuzu - Mestarin kynsi (Nuclear Blast)
  • The Final Score - 7/10
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