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Song descriptions

The album starts in a subtle, hypnotizing way with the epic one-minute prelude “Cyberia”: a delicate mix of gracious guitar playing and impressive orchestration, building up to a melodic and bombastic climax before morphing into the thrash grenade “Violence & Grace”.

“Violence & Grace” starts with a brutal  riff, slamming in with a wall of sound before reaching a headbanging chorus. The message is clear: brace for impact! During the whole song father and son musically duel with each other like madmen, armed with power vocals, ferocious drum fills and vicious guitar shredding, supported by the brilliant orchestration of Carsten Altena (The Monolith Deathcult). This is where Metallica’s “Hit The Lights” meets Nightwish’s “Last Ride Of The Day”.

Suppose you still have speakers, then the next song Infradead might give them the final mercy blow. A forward moving Rammstein-like riff sets the tone in a marching rhythmic groove, followed by super aggressive lead vocals and spiced up with mighty orchestration in the triumphant chorus. This song is as brutal as its name suggests, not in the least thanks to the tight and powerful production of Hans Pieters. This is one of the heaviest songs on the album and lyrically describes what you often think, but can’t say to people you profoundly hate. Looking for a song to sing to your mother in-law? Here it is!

But no time to rest, because the fastest song now presents itself under the name The War Inside My Head”. In this track, OR NOT turns the intensity up to 11 and beyond with superfast double bass and drum fills, aggressive multi-layer vocals and an inventive prog-rock Dream Theater style bridge proving that OR NOT can’t be compared to any other band. A great example of metal-dad Dolf contributing old-school mayhem and young Daniël carrying the flag of a new generation of metal heads. This is merciless pedal to the metal with convincing vocals of a man, screaming away his demons from the past.

“Catastrophe Democracy” shows that OR NOT also has another side where compact Machine-Head-like riffs are combined with cinematic samples that give the song a certain Ministry-feel that many may appreciate. This daring song describes how politicians push our society to dig its own grave with wars, religious conflicts and environmental pollution just for their personal benefit, causing the last song of the album “How It Ends” to become a harsh reality soon.

The song “H82H8” is one hand very melodic, but also extremely thrashy with a cool, repetitive riff at break-neck pace that could also be written by Static-X or Fear Factory. This energetic anthem grips with an unforgettable hook and lead guitar lines, swaying with an undeniable headbang-worthy groove as it shifts between different rhythmic passages.

“Ceramic Skin” sends a clear message to all bullies in this world. Mesmerizing melodies merge with raw aggression and catchy epic passages creating a soul piercing story that reminds all of us that we are not alone in so many of our struggles. The arrangement and intense playing amplify the described insecurity, cruelty and revenge, reminding us that every action has a consequence.

“Ballistic” signals it’s time to move. An infectious groovy slamming riff that makes it hard not to jump around right away, spiced up with wah-bass. In many ways a typical OR NOT song with all those elements that are so representative for their specific sound and style. This is metal at its core.

If you like aggression combined with melody and bombastic orchestras, then “Someday” may be your thing. Starting mid-tempo, transcending into a beautiful, melodic guitar solo and evolving in a fast Seven-Spires like ending. This is a wild ride between intense but controlled power, calmer parts and untamable thrash metal passages all backed up by a wall of roaring guitars and mighty orchestration that elevates the song to epic proportions with a modern touch. There is clearly no holding back here.

“Slicing The Waves” starts off with a atmospheric, almost hypnotizing solo, gently leading the listener into trancelike realms, but soon hitting you in the chest with an ultraheavy pounding riff. Please note the ripping twin leads in the glorious middle part, where also the bass guitar has an extraordinary and prominent role in the musical spectrum. Also here, the song is very diverse and ends fast, fully in the signature style of OR NOT. The song describes the urge to escape our daily challenges and hit the surfboard to feel free and alive again and here you can experience how lyrics and music can go hand in hand to express these emotions three dimensionally.

In this case, the ultimate master piece is at the end of the record, appropriately called How It Ends”. This song is a representation of the entire musical spectrum of the band. The 9-minute song starts with an epic, Hans Zimmer-like, intro, but soon sirens go off, missiles explode and the band erupts in a pulverizing song that contains everything OR NOT stands for: fast in-your-face Slayer-style riffs, aggressive multi-layered power vocals, hair-raising solo’s, spectacular drumming, heavy breakdowns and even metal core – Biohazard like raps at the end! Like the end of the world, there is a total absence of mercy here. But if this is the soundtrack of the end of the world, then at least it will sound great, because all musical elements have been meticulously crafted in this incredibly detailed production.

“Hit The Ceiling” is clearly the OR NOT party song. Play this when you’re grumpy and all your frowns will turn upside down. Like any other song on this album, this track has its very own identity and its own atmosphere. The combination of ruthless energy on one hand and super catchy melody on the other make sure that this ear-catcher remains in your head for days. Very hard to stand still on this one!

“Dark Wave” is an unrelenting metal anthem that showcases the individual musical expertise of its members when chunky riffs merge with strong beats, aggressive shouts and memorable guitar lines. An accessible and mighty hymn that may get a lot of fists in the air during the upcoming live shows.

“Screaming To The Heavens” is one of the few moments to briefly get some breath. Here OR NOT showcases their versatility, delivering a touching ballad-like verse before unleashing a full-blown metal extravaganza during the first chorus and everything that follows after that. The song captivates the pain and despair of staying behind after losing a beloved one.

“The Apple & The Tree” is a special one-minute instrumental that once ignited the birth of OR NOT. This was the first song father and son ever recorded together and which set the tone for everything that would follow after that. The song is not really representative of the signature style of OR NOT, but briefly shows the tightness and versatility of two musicians who do what they love and love what they do.

“Someday (acoustic version)” is an acoustic version of the original heavy song on the record. Here you will find no heavy guitars or drums, but only “metal dad” singing along with the orchestra and demonstrating that OR NOT has many different sides.



Album produced & mixed by Hans Pieters of The Peoples Noise.
Album mastered by Peter van ‘t Riet of Finetune Mastering.
Album artwork by Rafido.
Album orchestration by Carsten Altena of One Man Orchestra.
Album background vocals by Franky Nendels, Rick Maas, Ivor van Beek, Herman de Kok, Thijs Ronteltap, Mark van Maurik, Eric Pinas, Mike van der Vaart.
All photography by Hans Blomhert.
All 3D video designs by Jeroen Helmer of Blue Lake Vision.
All songs & lyrics by Dolf & Daniel Blomhert.

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