Sunday 24 December 2017

On Stage: ORB @ Paradiso

Only good things seem to be coming from Down Under, especially regarding anything psychedelic. Very popular now of course are Tame Impala and King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard. Another band trying to follow in their footsteps are ORB who are visiting Amsterdam.

ORB at Paradiso Amsterdam, December 20 2017

The small hall of Paradiso is still quite empty when I get there. More people do arrive but it doesn’t really fill up. The band is still quite unknown and just released their second album Naturality. The first half of the show is quite heavy, leaning to a mix of stoner and prog rock. Singer and bassist Zak Olsen sometimes sounds like Ozzie Osbourne with a similar squeezed voice and with the heavy riffs it's impossible not to hear traces of Black Sabbath. It is no surprise since early Black Sabbath where the band draws a lot of inspiration from. The three look a bit shy on stage and aren't moving a lot. Despite the sometimes lively music it looks quite static. The slower heavy sound doesn't help either.

Halfway Olsen and guitar player Daff Gravolin switch guitars and the sound changes as well. The songs are lighter now and more funky and that actually suits the band better, because these guys can play and their music is full of twists and ever changing time signatures. Sometimes it's a bit too much and it seems like they are playing several songs at the same time. Some songs also sound like they aren't completely finished or despite a lot is happening don't seem to go anywhere.

ORB can be a promising band because they have good ideas and are able to play well. Their music is definitely interesting and I totally dig the big riffs and psychedelic outbursts. But they really need to spice up their act since the band doesn't really look inviting and it's hard to win over a crowd like this. They could learn a lot from their famous fellow countrymen and maybe in a few years time are able to join them as the front runners of the Australian music scene.

All Pictures

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