Ophir – Saat und Ernte

In a nice blue sleeve and on nice blue vinyl as well comes this 10″ record from Ophir. It is released by Greyland Records, also home to the related acts Wappenbund and Coinside. ‘Saat & Ernte’ is also available in a cd-version, but the vinyl version looked to me more special. The record starts with one of the highlights, the hymn ‘Requiem’, a deep neo-classical composition, built on orchestral soundscapes, spoken word/samples and some distorted sounds. The song has a rather militaristic feel, but not as heavy as Wappenbund, of which Ophir is actually a ‘pre-project’. According to the silver-coloured insert sheet, two songs were recorded in 1998/99, and the three other tracks in 2001/2002.

The record is overall very enjoyable, with a nostalgic ambiance, taking you the first decades of the 20th century. Neo-classical and industrial elements combined in tracks with a somewhat martial feel. Some tracks, like ‘Bleibt der Erde treu part 1’ are more hevay and bombastic. The highlight of the record is the powerful symphonic title track, with harsh sampled vocals, heavy percussion and a moving classical melody line. If you appreciate Wappenbund then you will also like Ophir. The music may not be completely original, as there are many players in this musical field, but this is certainly a strong record.

artist: Ophir
label: Greyland Records
details: 10', 5 tracks, limited to 288 copies. GR10 (2002)