Sacred & Profane
Oryad - "Sacred & Profane"
ALBUM TITLE: Sacred & Profane
GENRE: Gothic Metal
LABEL: SAOL/Toxoplasma Records
Moira Murphy: Composer, arranger, vocals, piano, keyboard, synth, world percussion, orchestration
Matt Gotlin-Sheehan: Composer, drums
February 2023 is the month to welcome phenomenal new stars on the female fronted metal horizon: ORYAD. Scorched Earth presents the band’s first video single that is out now to conquer the world of mystic metal, yet combined with prog and doom elements. Presented with an eye-capturing artful video completing the full package, it touts the upcoming new album Sacred & Profane (coming May 25, 2023).
“While Scorched Earth tactics in war are brutal and dehumanizing, it was the only term that best encapsulated the feeling you get when you decide to radically change your life,” the band dives into the song’s meaning. “As new tree growth comes from the ashes of forest fires, new opportunities can arise out of truly starting over. This song is a celebration of that and probably our most ‘straight-ahead’ tune that resembles traditional symphonic metal.”
The excellent production includes sharp, edgy heavy guitar riffing and delivers the perfect foundation for truly operatic vocals to shine. On top, a classic guitar solo mating with the song and a musical intensification towards the end of the listening experience, sweeps in to finalize the track. Shoulder to shoulder with a double speed drum battery, it scorches and fertilizes the ground under this majestic and atmospheric piece.
The band recruited producer Vikram Shankar, winner of the National Federation of Music Clubs competition for classical composition, for the album’s mixing and mastering, which sets an overall rounded sound for Sacred & Profane.
The album's first single Scorched Earth is now available everywhere. Check out the music video on YouTube:
Although the band has been working on music since 2017, the new and fresh material, written from 2020-2022, creates a more progressive doom opera style, adding modern elements to the symphonic metal foundation. Compared to their mini album Hymns of Exile & Decay, which the band released in June 2021, the sound of Oryad has elevated to a broader level, with heavy emphasis on ritual and dance at their live shows. Oryad keep their artful eye on creating a live experience for the audience that feels more like a musical emotional journey, connecting with nature and myths, rather than simply just playing songs during their eye catching live performances: „The songs are an exploration of ourselves, grief, and our connection to the universe through the vehicles of myth,“ the band describes.
Oryad band lead Moira Murphy and her operatic, powerful vocal performance constitute the force of the band. Although in the early steps of each creative process, Moira and drummer Matt Gotlin-Sheehan joined hands, the process then continued in team effort with additional musicians Luca and Adam, who are classically trained in jazz, to meet the music’s majestic and powerful demands. The album and new music benefit strongly from Moira, who is a trained opera singer, but has also taken classes in orchestral arranging specialized for metal bands in 2020 with Francesco Ferrini (pianist and orchestrator of Fleshgod Apocalypse), stepping up the arrangement game for the band.
Each song on the album speaks for the deep connection with nature and its spirits. The music holds the ability to carry its listeners through a colorful pallet of emotions, a journey which the band describes as follows: „In our society we have anesthetized so much of the human experience and partitioned off parts of ourselves, claiming that anger, for example, can only be ugly. That grief should be hidden. That it is socially acceptable to only revel in their brighter siblings love, joy, and hope…which only makes those three more cloying and homogenized.“
Oryad’s upcoming album Sacred & Profane will be released on May 25, 2023 and can be pre-ordered here: https://orcd.co/oryad