Italy’s ORIENT EXPRESS got its start in 2002. In 2003, they released a demo and then went on tour with various festivals and in support of various bands, mostly Punk. At some point their membership grew from three to five. In 2006 they recorded their full-length debut, dubbed “Illusion” and released on the independent Italian label My Kingdom Music.
Almost immediately I’m reminded of modern ANATHEMA. There’s the same sort of dark Alternative just barely heavy enough to maybe be of interest to the Metal crowd perhaps. Like SEROTONAL, they’re a bit more electric, eliciting an image of a muggy summer day in sweltering urban decay. Still, that’s only about half the sound that we’ll get on the album. At the mark the guitar turns discordant, the drumming turns up, and by “Madness” we’re in a world that marries the discordant meanderings and chaotic over-drumming of Post-Hardcore or Post-Metal with the somehow-introspective nonsense of Pscyhedelia. It’s an interesting sound, I’ll give them that.
And thusly the album progesses—the softer, cleanly picked Alternative parts interspersed with Post-Psychedelia. If you’ve listened to the first two songs, you’ve practically heard the entire album; ORIENT EXPRESS has found a sound, but they haven’t done anything with it. It’s temporarily interesting, but since the songs have no individual personality, the album as a whole goes nowhere fast. Fifty-four minutes slow to a crawl as the listener keeps swearing that he’s already heard this part.
I don’t foresee this album being of much interest to the Metal community. Give it instead to the Art and Indy Rockers who want a soundtrack to a bad day.