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Moonspell | Darkness and Hope | review | goth | metal | Lollipop

Moonspell

Darkness and Hope (Century Media)
by Vinnie Apicella

If we figuratively examine their name and attentively absorb their music, it all becomes clear, this is not your average band of sorrowful dread seekers. Surely the darkness exists, and in perfect balance, does too hope, thus their new record is a combined effort of emotional turmoil stationed in longing and desire. The stars become perfectly aligned, even after the finality of the doomed cover of Ozzy's "Mr. Crowley," an unexpected act of defiance, even if better served as a B-side. I won't be naïve enough to say Darkness and Hope is a repeat of what many consider their golden age of mid-'90s classics, Wolfheart or Irreligious. Darkness and Hope falls better between their experimental Sin Pecado and more aggrandized The Butterfly Effect. Maintaining power with a fixture of progression, a career-wide character trait, Moonspell's latest effort is highly emotive and wrought with minor-key melody and deft mood swings. Their Gothic grace remains rooted in songs like the opening title track, a near replica of Bauhaus with its acoustic mix and atmospheric arrangements; "Firewalking," an oncoming rush of immediacy which overtakes the latter, a heavy breather high on harmonic placement built around stoic riffs and one for top billing among the likes of "Heartshaped Abyss," "Devilred," and the stirring "Ghostsong." Moonspell, a long valued tradition in aggressive enchantment hits on their full range over and above expectation with peak and valley significance to every song.
(2323 W. El Segundo Blvd. Hawthorne, CA 90250)

 


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