The Order
Rockwolf

As a reviewer, I’ve set down an immutable law to follow as of late: if I find myself quite amazed at what I hear from an entirely unfamiliar band that has been around for a while, I go on to check out some other releases from this band to dot my i’s and cross my t’s so to speak. With their new album Rockwolf, Swiss hard rockers The Order literally blew me away from the very first unbridled grooves of opener “Sex, Drugs & Rock’n’Roll”, the album’s most vigorous and spectacular number. Gianni Pontillo’s glass-cutter yet gritty baritone along with the incredibly heavy for the genre metallized guitars, sharp-edged classic riffs and solos gave me pause for a spell, as I just couldn’t comprehend how this group hadn’t made it into my collection before. The point being that I’m a huge sucker for all things Hard Rock from Switzerland and there are many reasons for that. With bands like Gotthard, Shakra, Granit, Crystal Ball and now The Order, this country is quickly turning into the most reliable source of contemporary Hard Rock, if you ask me.

No sooner had I thoroughly enjoyed listening to Rockwolf, that I discovered their previous album Metal Casino, which erased any remaining doubts about the status of the band. To my surprise, the latter just knocked me down with a feather! Quite possibly, The Order is that rare bird that fills you with an irrepressible urge to experience its merits from A to Z, and I’m sure now that my next look into them will be their debut Son Of Armageddon.

But let me get back to the subject of this review. Nearly every song on Rockwolf has it what it takes to hold you completely electrified all the way. Powerhouse pulsating rhythms, diverse guitar tones, screaming born and bred classic solos, and enough catchy tunes to make you plainly hum along and boogie to the music. The nearest comparisons to them would be The Order’s compatriots of Gotthard and Shakra, but there are also many other moments to remember the classic heroes of the genre. “Love Ain’t A Game To Play” and “Angels In Disguise” sound like something Phil Lynott (Thin Lizzy) and Matt Sinner (Sinner, Primal Fear) could have come up with had they ever been able to jam together. “Endlessly” is a weighty, wistful ballad with a number of unexpected turns and tempo accelerations reminding simultaneously of Kingdom Come and Robert Plant’s solo work. The title track presents sticky dirty-sounding plucked guitars which wouldn’t be out of place on an early Def Leppard album. The groove is purely mesmerizing and the culminating solo lick throws you into ecstasies to say the least. “Miss Paradise” is an evident nod to Queen‘s ragtime eccentricity and sounds like something from A Night At The Opera or Jazz albums. Even the bonus cover track for Duran Duran’s “Wild Boys” isn’t stripped of some originality, though a few people could certainly find it a bit much for their tastes.

In summary, The Order and their new disc has become my Hard Rock discovery of the year. So far, 2009 has gone like a house on fire, and not in the metal circles alone. If anything, the new releases from House Of Lords, Gotthard, Shakra, Jorn and The Trophy will please almost all Hard Rock fans and I have no doubts The Order will perfectly fall within this list also. Rockwolf could definitely become your new favorite Hard Rock record, not only for the time being, but also for many years to come. Hats off to a great job, guys!

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Igor Stakh
September 24th, 2009

Comments

  1. Commented by: Blackwater Park

    “The Order and their new disc has become my Hard Rock discovery of the year.”

    Then why haven’t you told me about them?

    Good thing I already know about this album, was also blown away, and have actually been meaning to bring them to your attention! :lol:


  2. Commented by: ceno

    Glad you liked it. As a matter of fact I did mean to tell you about them but then remembered you had this album. :wink:


  3. Commented by: Blackwater Park

    Listening to it right now! Still awesome!


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