Album Review: Orange Goblin – Science, Not Fiction

Orange Goblin

Album Review: Orange Goblin – Science, Not Fiction
Reviewed by Tim Finch

A band who should need no introduction, Orange Goblin last released new music with 2018’s ‘The Wolf Bites Back’, a critically acclaimed album and the last to feature Martyn Millard on bass.  In the six years since, we’ve seen Martyn’s departure – on good terms – the arrival of Harry Armstrong, a hell of a lot of live shows, including their unique career spanning 25th anniversary set at Damnation Festival and of course the signing with the legendary Peaceville Records.

As they entered the studio in 2023 the fan base excitement was heightened, especially with the news that Mike Exeter was on production duties, a man who’s previous works include that of Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, Heaven and Hell and not to mention a large chunk of the early Cradle of Filth catalogue.

What is evident as ‘The Fire At The Centre Of The Earth Is Mine’ kicks off this new opus, is that this is not Orange Goblin of old. Whilst ‘Frequencies from Planet Ten’ and ‘Time Traveling Blues’ are stoner rock classics, ‘Science, Not Fiction’ is not stoner rock. The bands sound has developed, grown, and matured just as the band have themselves.

Album Review: Orange Goblin – Science, Not Fiction

The sound that greets us now is HUGE! This is perfectly produced, for want of a better word, stadium rock, Chris and Harry set a massive foundation off which Joe’s guitars build with its earth shattering tone and majestic rolling riffs. All the while Ben’s familiar vocal rasp remains unmistakable, but again seems to have grown.

‘Ascend The Negative’ has an awesome classic rock sounding riff mixed with the a hook laden chorus that will have you singing for days; whilst ‘False Hope Diet’ sounding a little darker has a rather poignant story to tell through Ben’s lyrics.

Just when you’ve got your head round the new album, things get flipped on their head with ‘Cemetary Rats’, a six minute ditty that starts with a haunting piano intro leading into Harrys dark sounding bass. At the two minute mark things really take off when they introduce an element of old school thrash, and finish off with a rip roaring four minutes of head banging majesty. A song that will no doubt become a new live anthem.

All too often a bands new album is presented as their “best work yet” often with no real merit to do so, a mere cliché if you will. However with ‘Science, Not Fiction’ this statement wholly accurate. This really could be Orange Goblin’s “Black Album” moment, one that fires them into the stratosphere. From start to finish this is an hour of out and out rock bangers that you will have on repeat for a long time to come.

Well done Ben, Harry, Joe and Chris, you truly have outdone yourselves!

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