Otep – House of Secrets

First things first.

Otep’s House of Secrets kicks complete and total ass.

Dealing with both internal and external issues this time around, Otep has delivered yet another explosive album. Otep’s website is filled with their views on the upcoming election and links to upcoming Rock the Vote performances, so it should come as no surprise that Otep is “less than pleased” with the current state of the union. Otep manages to turn their anger into delicious aggression on House of Secrets, the sophomore follow-up to the band’s debut album, Sevas Tra.

“Warhead” (VIDEO) kicks off the band’s war on the war on terrorism. “The King of Lies is alive/Look around, look inside”. But just because Otep is a chick doesn’t mean this is going to be a peaceful protest. “Warhead” sets the heavy pace for the entire album (heavy in the Headbanger’s Ball sense of the word). Joey Jordison (Slipknot) provides drums on this track as well as five others, and fits perfectly with this style of music.

Gone is most of the rapping that the band seemed to be dabbling in. The majority of the tracks on House of Secrets are straight forward metal. None of these songs would seem out of place on a Slipknot or Chimaira album. There are a few “poetry readings” over music that eventually develop into songs. It’s all part of the band’s performance, and it works here. On “Nein”, for example, the band switches between spoken poetry and musical performance. It’s art mixed with metal, but it’s not over the top. It works.

Tracks like “Sepsis”, “Hooks and Splinters”, “Warhead” and the title track should be enough to sell a few fans tickets to Ozzfest this year. Otep’s House of Secrets was a pleasant surprise — it’s heavy when it wants to be and gives listeners enough breaks in between the blasts to stop and smell the anger.

01. Requiem
02. Warhead
03. Buried Alive
04. Sepsis
05. House of Secrets
06. Hooks and Splinters
07. Gutter
08. Autopsy Song
09. Suicide Trees
10. Nein
11. Self-made
12. Shattered Pieces

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