I was looking for music to play for some people who do not share my musical taste, so I needed something ‘light’. After a while I started browsing some neofolk, a genre I seldom play and I noticed that Orplid has a new album. A new album, 12 years after the last one!
I my memory does not fail me, the titleless 1998 debut of Orplid was my first ‘real’ neofolk album. I still the earlier material of Orplid, but seldom play it.
Putting on “Deus Vult” it is soon clear that Orplid changed a bit. The acoustic guitars had to make place for soft electronics, but there are still electric guitars here and there. The atmosphere is roughly the same as on earlier albums. The music is soft, sometimes somewhat melancholic, the distinctive vocals Uwe Nolte are still there. Unfortunately Claudia Arndt has been replaced by a female vocalist that I like less.
Something familiar and something new. The music goes from orchestral to more IDM kind of music to minimal ambient. Not bad at all actually, but not really my cup of tea either.
If you are quick, you can get a luxury version of the album that includes a book and there is also a massive box set with the complete Orplid discography available.
Links: Orplid, Auerbach Tonträger
Many years ago it was Orplid that introduced me to the musical style called “neofolk”. Their untitled debut remains the best album in this style with its not too typical sound. Orplid kept making masterpieces and when my interest in neofolk started to wane, Orplid started to change their style. However their albums never blew me away like the debut anymore and I had to get used to them as well, they definately made the better music from the scene. The style of today is hard to describe, but when you know have followed Orplid too, you will not be too surprised by “Greifenherz”. Its sound comes natural after “Sterbender Satyr” (2006), but there are some electric guitars, some darker electronics and a bit more “Barbarossa” atmosphere, but the result is a mostly tranquil album with very nice songs. Just as on the previous album there are some distinctive female vocals that I do not really like and some tracks are not really my taste (yet?), but musically Orplid is a lot better than most bands from the scene. By lack of a better tag, I used “neofolk” for the navigational cabin to put this album in, but “Greifenherz” goes from neofolk, to atmospheric ambient music, rocky tracks, wavy influences to spoken word.
Links: Orplid, Auerbach Tonträger
Orplid’s 1997 debut cd was the album that for the first time (consciously) introduced me to the neofolk genre. Still this album is the absolute highlight of a genre that soon lost my interest for the largest part. Orplid continued to do their own thing, so the following releases were different every time. The same goes for “Sterbender Satyr” (‘dying satyr’). This time the music became very tranquil with quite some electronic sounds and ‘an 80’ies feeling’ here and there. I am not really sure what to think of the album. One track with female vocals is simply horrible, other tracks are rather boring, some are nice. Do I have to get used to the new album, or is Orplid for me following a downward track? I have heard the cd a few times now, and the album grows, but very slowly. Too bad, but I always admire a band that doesn’t follow the obvious parths.
-addition 21/5/07 : another magnificent album with spoken word and singing over subtle soundscapes –