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Delain - Moonbathers

Delain - Moonbathers

Label : Napalm Records | Archive under prog / sympho metal

Release type: Full-length CD

Sjak : I probably am one of the biggest Delain fans to be found on this planet and in my opinion all the until now released albums are absolute classics in the female fronted metal genre. However, where the previous albums convinced me from the very first listen, this new meanwhile fifth full-length studio album ‘ Moonbathers’ initially gave me the feeling of “Is this all they have to offer?”. Therefore at first I was quite disappointed about what I had heard and I thought that I had set my expectations for the new album way too high. Now you shouldn’ t immediately stop reading this review, because as mostmodern fairytales also this story has an happy ending. The new material from this world-class band just proved to need quite some more listens before the tunes revealed their true strength and beauty. That has a lot to do with the fact that the new material isa lot less poppy and sounds much more varied and especially more bombastic. Of course ‘ Suckerpunch’ and ‘ Turn The Lights Out’ were already known from the EP ‘ Lunar Prelude’ and as such they obviously convinced me right from the start. That was also the fact for ‘ The Glory And The Scum’ (which was according the first rumors going to be called ‘ Clawfinger’ ), which was already played live during the last couple of shows and in my opinion belongs to the strongest tracks of this ‘ Moonbathers’ album, and the nice heavy opening song ‘ Hands Of Gold’ with its lovely chorus and the beautiful vocal contribution of Arch Enemy grunter Alissa White-Gluz. The remaining seven tunes which are to be found on ‘ Moonbathers’ needed some more time to convince me, but after having done that investment especially the subdued ‘ The Hurricane’ and the ballad ‘ The Last Breath’ have turned into absolute classics which belong to the best that Delain has ever done. Furthermore the smooth ‘ Fire With Fire’ will grow into a true live classic tune, because the groovy riff and the nice chorus are catchy as hell. The songs ‘ Pendulum’ and ‘ Dance Macabre’ took the longest time to really convince me, but also those started to truly captivate me after a while. I was also very positively surprised by the great performance of the Queen-cover ‘ Scandal’ , on which Charlotte Wessels sounds deliciously aggressive. The only song which in my humble opinion can’ t really compete with the rest of the material on offer here is closing track ‘ The Monarch’ , which closes the album somewhat in a moderate fashion. As already mentioned at first I wasn’ t very impressed by ‘ Moonbathers’ and I had the feeling that this album couldn’ t compete with the previous Delain records, but as time passed by and I listened to the new material more and more I had to drastically adjust my original opinion. ‘ Moonbathers’ proves to be very capable of continuing the growth that Delain has shown with the previous albums. A great balance between bombastic keyboards parts and fierce guitar riffs, a fine variation between subdued and heavy material, a fantastic vocal performance of Charlotte Wessels and a crystal clear sound “in the end” account for the fact that this fifth Delain album has become one of the very best albums that I have had the pleasure listening to in 2016!

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