The Arcane Order (as Scavenger) - Promo 2005 (EP)
Thrash/Melodic Death
3 songs (15:26)
Release year: 2005
The Arcane Order
Reviewed by Ken

The Arcane Order has been a long time coming. The band was the formed in 2000—initially called Scavenger until September of 2005—by guitarist Flemming C. Lund during the slow demise of his melodic death metal band Autumn Leaves. Lund also joined the thrash band Invocator at this time, but eventually, for personal reasons, he briefly lost interest in music, so Scavenger was put on hold for a few years. In 2003, with a rejuvenated passion for music, he resurrected the band and once again began writing new material.

This time out Lund focused on finding a solid band and did so with ex-Autumn Leaves alum Boris Tandrup on bass, a local 20 year old drummer by the name of Morten L. Sorensen, and ex-Darkane vocalist Lawrence Mackrory on vocals. With songs written they entered Hansen Studios (owned by Invocator guitarist/vocalist, Jacob Hansen) and in June of 2004 had everything recorded but vocals, samples and keyboards. Unfortunately, getting Mackrory into the studio to record vocals proved to be impossible and seven months later Lund decided to effectively end the working relationship with Mackrory. Ex-Autumn Leaves vocalist Torsten Madsen stepped in and laid down some test vocals for the new material and then in February of 2005 a permanent replacement was found in Kasper Thomsen, current lead vocalist of the Danish band Raunchy. At the end of May they again entered Hansen Studios and in two days the band was finished recording. The result was this three track demo CD. And quite a demo it is.

If you take the melodic death metal of Lund’s previous band, Autumn Leaves, and the thrash of his other current band, Invocator, you’ll get a good idea of what this demo sounds like. It’s not true melodic death metal, nor true thrash, but a good mix of the two with some more modern influence. Some will likely call it metalcore, but I think that label is a little generic and lazy. Indeed this band is seemingly outside of most genres, not able to be pigeonholed into one specific genre. Also, with the addition of Thomsen to the vocal department you will undoubtedly get comparisons to Raunchy—another band that is hard to place a label on—and those comparisons wouldn’t necessarily be unjust as the similarities are there, though I feel Thomsen sings heavier on this demo than he does with Raunchy.

The demo starts with “Servants Of A Darker World,” a fast, thrashy piece with some nice synth work. Thomsen shows us why he was a great replacement for Lars Vognstrup in Raunchy; like Lars had, he’s got a very unique, solid and commanding vocal style that fits perfectly in this thrash/melodic death metal mix. But let’s not forget the man behind this band. Lund delivers some excellent guitar work on this demo, he can be heavy or melodic, groove or shred. His solo work is also a welcome addition to each song, fast, slow, or both, and completely lacking of self-indulgence (i.e. the perfect solo). “Servants Of A Darker World” stays heavy throughout. Great song. Next up is “Breathe The Poison” and this song is more of the same, but slightly mellower with a catchier, more hook-laden chorus with some harmonized singing. Torsten Madsen contributes backing vocals on this song and I’m assuming he’s lent his clean vocals. Overall, though, another great song—which reminds me of Natural Born Chaos-era Soilwork. My personal favorite is the final track, “The Sanity Insane.” It’s another fast and heavy, thrash-filled groover. The chorus is easily the catchiest on the demo with Jacob Hansen and Torsten Madsen contributing vocals with one of the two adding a nice power metal-like falsetto to the mix, which sounds killer. A nice melodic solo slows things down in the middle and everything that follows is simply icing on the cake.

This is a telling three song demo, a nice showcase of great things to come (hopefully). And indeed someone else must have felt the same way as this demo got them a record deal with Metal Blade records. They’re currently writing the album as we speak and currently have four songs completely written and they’re working on at least another five before they’ll hit the studio this Spring. As previously noted, Scavenger is no more, so keep an eye out for The Arcane Order. 2006 is shaping up to be an awesome year for metal, their debut full-length should be a great addition to an already impressive list.

AUDIO: Breathe The Poison (download) and The Sanity Insane (shoddy stream)

Note: In time these links will likely becoming outdated.

Killing Songs :
Servants Of A Darker World, Breathe The Poison and The Sanity Insane
Ken quoted 85 / 100
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