Dark Moor - Autumnal 3.5/5

Reviewed: 3-27-09





Tracklist:

1. Swan lake
2. On the hill of dreams
3. Phantom queen
4. An end so cold
5. Faustus
6. Don't look back
7. When the sun is gone
8. For her
9. The enchanted forest
10. The sphinx
11. Fallen leaves waltz


Dark Moor diletantes will be enthralled and beguiled by their recent grandiose enchantment 'Autumnal'. This epicene epoch of symphonic myths serves as a hymnal of honour and practice. These Spaniards of spontaneous spangle, spanner and arrange each song into a majestic array of magick and melancholy.

This orchestral quartet seldom fall short of the glory that is Dark Moor. Each mystic rhythm and classical compositions is carefully mended, refashioned, and sewn into a tapestry of well-orchestrated triumphant mediation. This chivalrous gesture leaves the eyes agaze in wonderment, as one enthusiastically reads the poetic lyrics, while the heart pulsates with passion; thus, identifying with the heroes and agents of legend and lore.

The spell begins with the oceanborne spirit of "Swan lake". This adaptation of Tchaikovsky's masterpiece is beatific, and heavenly. "On the hill of dreams" is an alluring escapade, serving quite well as their latest single and video. This siren song sung with the soprano voice of Itea Benedicto (from the Spanish band Niobeth) sets the pace for a very classic Nightwish comparison all throughout 'Autumnul'. Even the melody is very reminiscient of "Phantom of the opera", as performed on 'Century's child'.

"Phantom queen" rightfully follows, with its contagious chorus and garrulous growls. "Faustus" is an adaptation of Franz Listz and Goethe's twist of temptation, and also channels a disgruntled roar, showcasing Alfred Romero's incredible range. He has often been compared to Khan of Kamelot, which is a fair assesment, especially on a song like "When the sun is gone", which echoes "Nights of Arabia". However, Romero's style is easily recognized, and quite polished with a strident flourish.

"For her" is a Homeric epic tale of the brave Odysseus sailing forlorn for 20 years, desiring union with Penelope. While the Hamlet inspired "An end so cold" descrys a tear for poor Ophelia. The sadness endures with the orutund Opheus and Eurydice lament of "Don't look back".

As to be expected, and appreciated, the dark mortal magician: Enrik Garcia's guitar harmonies, are incorporated into elemental charms of magniloquence and fixated pulchritude. New bassist Mario Garcia joins the merry band of shadowed landmark achievers. Roberto Cappa remains as their dutiful drummer.

Surprisingly, the CD ends with an instrumental "Fallen leaves waltz". There is no magnum opus bombastic track, as featured on previous outings. Essentially, the dedicated Dark Moor have eulogized another successful marriage of neo-classical masterwork, melded with orchestral extravagence. This tableau of synchronous syncopation is neither taciturn, nor reserved in its articulation between light and darkness. All fans who favour the reliquaries of Dark Moor will celebrate this CD with satisfaction.



MICHAEL




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