When you’re somebody like me who’s constantly on the search for new jams for whatever reason at the time may be, you’re gonna come across something truly unexpected if you search long and hard enough. Doom is possibly one of my more favorite variants of metal because of how crushing and long lasting it can be. Some bands take that shit to the absolute max, and where plenty have failed, Ortega has risen up with their latest record to show they’re not to be taken lightly.
Like I said, I love how massively intense and long-lasting doom metal can be, and Ortega took that to the extreme with their latest offering that is “Sacred States”. Pulling no punches with this piece, the record has a fair five tracks to call its own but Ortega quickly makes up for a pretty small track listing with an over 55 minute run time. And it’s time well spent, to say the least. If I had to describe what “Sacred States” is like to you metal veterans of the last few years, it combines the immense presence of Inter Arma, the ethereal essence that Minsk captures, and the longevity of Cough into one cohesive piece of sheer excellence that should you be any fan of doom, you are absolutely going to want to check “Sacred States” out immediately. Ortega takes what is without a doubt a very ambitious idea that’s ever so volatile that could fall about at any fucking moment, and pulls it off flawlessly in a way that can only be described as deliciously surprising. Each track has its own flavors and textures those make it a ride with a sound that is at the same time both so goddamn heavy and so dry at the same time that it’s continuously entertaining as the album progresses. From the absolutely haunting track that is “Descending Ladders” to the grinder of a closer that is “Void”, Ortega manage to cover a good portion of the doom spectrum with varying levels of heaviness, several relentless riffs that deliver time and again, and an overall texture with destructive vocals sprinkled on top to make “Sacred States” a piece that you’ll want to return to over and over again.
It’s not very often that any random piece of doom I happen to stumble across impresses me like Ortega has, and that quickly makes this band very special in my eyes. This band has commanded and earned my respect by the second song, but they gained my undivided attention by the end of this album. “Sacred States” is a scrumptious slab of doom that you are not going to want to miss at all, and I can promise you a good time if you but give it a chance.
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