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Darkwell - 'Moloch' Hot

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Written by Central Electronic Brain     October 17, 2016    
 
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With 'Moloch' you get just under an hour of excellent material in eleven songs.

It's been twelve years since Austrian band Darkwell's last release and I was under the impression the band had called it a day. I recall their debut album 'Susperia' from 2000 and the distinct vocals of Alexandra Pittracher. It sounded like the band were due to make a big mark on the Symphonic Metal scene but something obviously went amiss as Pittracher departed the band in 2003 to be replaced by Stephanie Meier who appeared on their 2004 album 'Metatron'. From then on things went quiet as the band put themselves on hiatus.

The good news is Darkwell's life apart wasn't so good after all and they got back together in 2012 with Pittracher back on vocals, did a few tours and started writing a new album, the results of which you can now hear on 'Moloch'.

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Best described as Goth Rock, with 'Moloch' you get just under an hour of excellent material in eleven songs (the two extra on the digi-pak, mixed and produced by Stefan Graf and bassist Roland Wurzer). Don't expect any out and out Rockers on this album, this is mature, steady-paced Rock. Songs like 'In Nomine Serpentis' ('In The Name of The Serpent') strike a chord and you could imagine this being performed live with a full orchestra. Even when you get a song which starts at a faster pace, i.e. 'Yoshiwara', there are time changes galore which makes this very much an album you need to sit and listen to. Other highlights include 'Awakening' which clocks in at just over seven minutes, 'Clandestine' and 'Golem'.

Complaints? A few maybe. One is the production team seem to have overused the same effects on Pittracher's voice throughout the album. She can clearly sing but to have her voice layered song after song makes it hard to appreciate. Sometimes less is more!

Steve Price

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