Out of nowhere it takes over you – review of Code Orange’s “What Is Really Underneath”

Author Vickky Lewis - 18.2.2023

Code Orange
are back with an album you didn’t expect. Their new album “What Is Really Underneath” dives more into their industrial sounds; as their metalcore roots are challenged and pushed in a new direction. 

From the moment the album begins, you are thrown into this whole new universe of Code Orange. Where we are in a futuristic world with industrial, sci-fi, and unsettling sounds. “What is Underneath” opens with “Drowning In It” which is a roadrunner. The track gets your heart rate racing with the synths while the vocals lurk in the background. The opening tracks pull you in and you can’t let go. 

“What Is Really Underneath” has a sense of chapters, you know you’re entering a new chapter when you arrive at an instrumental track. The most cinematic tracks Code Orange have produced. The instrumental track could easily be the soundtrack to a film or video game. They are horriding and atmospheric, just like traveling into the future. 

After each instrumental you enter a different phase of the album. The second phase kicks off with a highlight from the album “Cold.Club.Metal”. This phase is more on the heavier sound, going back to straight industrial metalcore. Where the drums are brutal, guitars are mental and vocals are screaming at the top of their lungs. It’s a crazy town but comes together unusually and it’s exciting. Because Code Orange has pushed the industrial metalcore boundary to new heights. 

The album comes to a close with three instrumental tracks that sum up the album. At the same time; it holds on to your last breath leaving you wanting more. “A Thin Reflective Line” is the first track to follow on instrumental tracks. It’s soft and melo and where it feels like it’s floating in outer space. Which leads into title track “What Is Really Underneath” where it picks up tempo and tone. The track is dark and hits you in the face before dropping off into a soft keyboard solo before taking off again.  Landing us on the final track of the album “The Path To Paradise” with its horror atmosphere and crackling sounds, it’s creepy but in a good way. Vocials once again appear echoing through the track, however with a running time of just over a minute. The album ends out of nowhere, leaving you wanting more. 

Code Orange’s “What Is Really Underneath” is a album that has come out of nowhere and you don’t realize you needed it until you listened to it. Especially with headphones on as each track is detailed and mastered perfectly. Giving you a surround sound feel where you think you’re actually inside the album. It’s industrial metalcore with a cinematic intention where it draws you in and takes over you.