January 19th, Friday evening. Another hectic, unproductive, and wasted day. I haven't had the chance to listen to any music today; however, there was a song echoing in my brain the entire day: 'Unspoken' by Vordona. After discovering them about a month and a half ago through submissions, yesterday I spent my evening only listening to their latest released single, 'Unspoken.' There's a lot to be said about this New Yorker collective.
Vordona // Unspoken [Visualizer]
Description:Progressive metal group Vordona return with their new single, Unspoken, that comes with a statement from their singer, Ali Abu Ali, about the new song.
“Being born into a refugee family of a nation fighting genocide and racism for the last 75 years, ‘Rage’ is one of the first things you become aware of, as it grows and storms endlessly with every new atrocity you witness. Then you quickly come to realize all the complicit parties are benefiting from the ongoing slaughter, while the liberation of the Palestinian people would only benefit the people, who are irrelevant in the game played by world leaders until they force their vote in with real activism. This song is a mere spill from the storm raging in a Palestinian.”
First and foremost, 'Unspoken' sounds rich and undoubtedly positions itself among the most professional in the metal music scene. At least that's how I feel after repeatedly listening to the song and contemplating different details each time.
Vordona's music stands out and deserves appreciation for its game-changing sound production, even though they show so much potential with their individual contributions and performances. For some reason, the song made me feel like someone from the band handled the sound production work because I don't think you can easily get all this intensively detailed work done by renting out limited time in a professional recording studio, based on my experience. In both cases, the work is quite impressive, incorporating the post-modern world with metal and cinematic elements, exceeding expectations in characterization, artistic, and aesthetic value.
From a musical perspective, the band shows unmistakable confidence in their abilities and individual performances. The familiar and trendy modern djent, progressive, and even sometimes metalcore guitars lead the way in a cinematic soundscape, accompanied by rich instrumentation and multi-layered cinematic elements and effects, beautifully blending Eastern vibes into the Western musical foundation. As someone originally from Istanbul, I am entirely convinced of how fresh they sounded with their Eastern and Western combination, also impressed by the additional Eastern instrument; the darbuka, and some rhythms in one of the highlight moments of the song. On top of this foundation, they present a game-changer vocalist with unmistakable charisma and personality in his singing, Ali Abu Ali , who is simply distinguishing Vordona from the rest of the world. He's got a voice that suggests this band is targeting not only the rock and metal music worlds but also the world of general music listeners. This music simply wouldn't be possible without him.
Lastly, the magical combination of such talent, artistic vision, and aesthetic sound quality already proves enough for me to argue that Vordona is one of the most impressive collectives I've recently listened to. In my recent reviews, I have been writing about the musical memory that listening to a new song leaves in your mind, and how confused and disappointed I was after listening to fantastic music then having nothing left in my memory afterward. In this case, Vordona has managed to play in my mind the entire day today, without hearing it again. And that tells us all about the potential of their work.
Vordona, band photo Credit: Unknown
On the other side of the coin, 'Unspoken' objectively doesn't have any weaknesses, except for one thing that caught my attention. As we often see in highly produced and digitalized works such as this song, there's a big risk of sounding outdated in the future. When I want to hear proper metal from the 2000s - as the year bands started working with high-end production in metal - I go and listen to 'Sugar' from System of a Down. And there has never been a band in my list with plugin instrument sounds.
Vordona, Unspoken graphic art Credit: Unknown
In conclusion, Vordona is undoubtedly one of the hottest prospects from New York that left me wanting more. World-class production with a fascinating post-modern metal concept, accompanied by cinematic depth and impressive characterization, performed by a gifted collective that has positioned themselves among the finest. Strongly recommended metal. Thank you for reading.
Vordona - Unspoken single front cover artwork
released November 24, 2023
Ali Abu Ali – Vocals
Pavlo Mysak – Instrumentals
Oscar Resti – Bass
Vordona on the Web
Listen to Metalhead Community's Monsters of Metal Underground playlist on Spotify