Ordo Draconis “Camera Obscura part 1 & 2”
Dutch post-black metallers Ordo Draconis sure have delivered a double treat with their “Camera Obscura” opus, blending together a theatrical and eclectic fusion of black metal, jazz, avant-garde, classical and experimental genres. The first album “The Star Chamber Reviews” album is based upon the epic piece “Lucifer” by Dutch writer/playwright Joost van den Vondel, dealing with the fall of Lucifer. The track ‘Mock Trial’ even includes a piece of Dutch spoken dialogue, before venturing into a section of Possessed’s ‘Fallen Angel’. “Camera Obscura” literally feels like play put to music, with dialogue scenes by a host of different characters and unique voices, atmospheric interludes, quirky bits, polka, tango, narrated pieces to dreamy choir sections. In that sense the band comes incredibly close to matching Arcturus’ avant-garde piece “La Masquerade Infernale”. Influe[n]ces are diverse ranging from important and formative genre acts as Arcturus, Emperor, Dodheimsgard, Ram-Zet, Solefald and Ulver to more mainstream rock artists such as Frank Zappa, jazz legend Glenn Miller and composers such as Richard Wagner. “The Star Chamber Reviews” is layer upon layer of experimental magnificence that more often than not feels like an epic proportioned soundtrack album. In other words, this is heavily experimental avant-garde stuff that is not for everyone. The second album “A View with a Room” is far more linear and displays the band’s black metal past more clearly, although here the band also includes a few bits and pieces of Oriental rhythms, melodies and even a reference to Grace Jones.