Black Orchid Empire’s sophomore album, Yugen, sees them expand their hard rock sound. The big choruses and massive riffs are enhance with a seamless production. There are the obvious influences of genre heavyweights such as Muse and Queens Of The Stone Age. This a good record and any fans of this genre will surely enjoy this record.
Opening strongly with My Favourite Stranger and Burn, the style of the album is obvious from the outset. Most songs on this album are built around riffs and choruses. Even when a song opens in an acoustic style it seems to eventually reach the riff/chorus dynamic that is synonymous with this album. This record certainly feels front loaded. With the songs on “side A” being more interesting and hitting harder. A song such as Wires has a drum intro that is best compared to that on You Could Be Mine. Again showcasing more of the influences from the bigger rock bands around.
After the good start the album, the record does tail off. It feels that from the ballad Vertigo onwards the record can lose your interest. This is in part to a slight drop in quality of the songs. Further to that the repetitive nature of this sound and become somewhat boring.
Overall this a good record from Black Orchid Empire. It initially grabs your attention but that can be lost as the album goes on. Any fans of this current crop of hard rock bands will surely enjoy this. However it doesn’t quite reach the level that was achieved by Bad Sign last year.