Label: Uprising! Records
Three similar bands: Tool/Leprous/Pain Of Salvation

Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm
01. Vermilion Pt.1: Arrival
02. Vermilion Pt.2: Below
03. Vermilion Pt.3: The Walls Of The Mind
04. Vermilion Pt.4: Feed The Void
05. Vermilion Pt.5: Emancipator
06. Pathway
07. Resonance
08. Unity

Sakari Ojanen: vocals, guitars
Joni Palmroth: bass
Ville Viitanen: drums
Jussi Poikonen: guitars

The Treachery of Senses (2012)
Origin (2016)


Mixed and mastered by Carson Slovak and Grant Mcfarland
Atwork by drummer Ville Viitanen

Released 2022-03-11
Reviewed 2022-05-28

uprising records

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Oddland is a Finnish progressive metal band who released their debut album in 2012, and album that “was greeted with a barrage of critical acclaim, including praise from top-tier publications like Rock Tribune, Metal Hammer, Inferno, and many others, and praised as the best prog-metal record ever recorded in Finland” according to the press sheet. Hallowed is probably not considered a top-tier publication but we also reviewed Oddland’s debut, apparently in a contrary manner to the rest. I did research reviews on the interweb, both this album and the debut. I didn’t find that barrage of acclaim, mostly the same positive reviewers as all other albums. One reviewer gave the debut 9/10 and this new album 7/10, and writing that this album was quite poor – kind of explains how reviewers online tend to overrate, doesn’t it? This album had more differing opinions than the first, I usually find that promising – so how about it?

Progressive is not the word I would use, but there is no genre name for the style of music that was progressive 20-30 years ago, which is the style Oddland perform in. They sound a lot like Leprous and Pain of Salvation, but also many others – I probably could namedrop a few hundred bands here if I like. The singer is a bit, and the same goes for the sounds, Burntfield and Minutian comes to mind as Finnish bands that are close. The musical variations are the same as we have heard from previously mentioned bands, and there is very little about Vermilion that is actually progressive in regard to the meaning of the word. Progressive is something that takes a step forward, progressive is to do something new that we haven’t heard before – Oddland is no more progressive than your everyday AOR- or thrash metal band.

Oddland is a decent band, the songs on the album are good enough and it is fine to listen to the album. The fifth track is very good, despite feeling ripped off from others. First time I heard the album I thought it sounded interesting, then I got tired with another band trying to appear progressive that only borrows everything they do from other bands. I never heard that acclaimed debut, but it is obvious that they are strong musicians so it might be great but judging their creative abilities through this album that is very doubtful considering that not a single note of Vermilion can be conceived by Oddland, everything feels borrowed. I don’t like borrowed, though I have to admit that sometimes it works.

What to recommend about Vermilion? It is not an album just to throw away, more like a lesser version of bands like Leprous. It is a decent album, but it lacks excitement, novelty, originality, things that should be the first thing you notice on a progressive album. So, another regressive album that is oversold by its label, good enough to give a spin or two, but hardly anything memorable.