Label: Napalm Records Release: 26th August 2016 Playing Time: 48 Min
Unbelievable, but Delain from the Netherlands are at service for 10 years now. And it’s similarly unbelievable that I somehow managed to overlook the band of vocalist Charlotte Wessels and keyboard player/band founder Martijn Westerholt (ex-Within Temptation) for the past 10 years completely.
It has also taken me some time to warm up to the band’s new album titled “Moonbathers”. There are multiple reasons for that: First of all, the songs are arranged with multiple layers. Two guitars, an orchestra, which does not only accompany the guitars, and a classic female voice, contrasted by some growls, demand a lot of concentration from the listener. It’s not exactly easy listening! This is also because of the choruses. The band deliberately forwent obtrusiveness (at the expense of catchiness, however) to focus on creating a certain tension. In those two points, the album reminds me of Leave’s Eyes. One more point of critique is that most hits are “hidden” somewhere in the middle of the album. So, if you do not fear complex arrangements, you will discover great gems like ‘Suckerpunch’, ‘Fire With Fire’ and ‘Pendulum’ (featuring Alissa White-Gluz from Arch Enemy).
After some hesitation in the beginning, I can now say that “Moonbathers” is a really great album. This is mostly because the band managed to keep up the tension throughout, with more silent parts alternating with hard guitar riffs. And in comparison to many other Symphonic Metal Bands nothing is softened up here. A clear must-buy!