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Moonspell - Wolfheart CD (album) cover




Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.87 | 57 ratings

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siLLy puPPy
4 stars WOLFHEART is the debut album by MOONSPELL which incorporates a nice mix of metal styles. Following the approach of their earlier EP "Under The Moonspell," we get a more refined blend of black and Gothic metal mixed with Celtic folk and symphonic touches. The transition from black metal to Gothic metal is taking place on WOLFHEART as the blackened touches are softened and the Gothic elements are increased. The intro with eerie synths and soft guitar sets the tone and atmosphere of a darkened land where blood thirsty wolves and Pagan rituals dominate with lunar madness.

This album really goes all over the place. It starts out in a symphonic black metal fashion but has tracks such as "Lua D'Inverno" that sound more like Pagan Celtic rituals. The vocals are heavily in the Goth department and Fernando Ribeiro's vocals play the perfect part of a blood sucking romeo and bring other Gothic metal bands of the day to mind such as Type O Negative, Tiamat and early Paradise Lost. The song structures are well laid out with aggressive and the lush sensual symphonic parts working well together. The female backing vocals by Birgit Zacher are particularly haunting.

WOLFHEART is a very consistent album and it's a testament to an era when various styles of metal were mixing with various forms of folk music and symphonic touches. MOONSPELL displays a strong command of this hybridity and becomes one of the most successful metal exports from Portugal. While some Gothic metal barely falls into the metal category focusing more on the romantic and sensual rather than the head banging aspects, WOLFHEART displays everything that makes a great Gothic metal album while retaining some excellent black metal aggressive fury as well without going as far as adding blastbeats or turning up the fury to up to extreme levels.

siLLy puPPy | 4/5 |


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