Rating:
8.6
Moonspell - Memorial
21 April 2006


Disc I [CD]
01. In Memoriam
02. Finisterra
03. Memento Mori
04. Sons Of Earth
05. Blood Tells
06. Upon The Blood Of Men
07. At The Image Of Pain
08. Sanguine
09. Proliferation
10. Once It Was Ours!
11. Mare Nostrum
12. Luna
13. Best Forgotten
14. Atlantic [Special Luxury Digipak bonus]
15. Phantom North [Portuguese bonus]

Disc II [DVD]
01. Memento Mori [Live at CC estúdio 2]
02. Blood Tells [Live at CC estúdio 2]
03. Best Forgotten [Live at CC estúdio 2]
04. In Memoriam [Live at Vilar de Mouros Festival]
05. Finisterra [Live at Vilar de Mouros Festival]
06. Memento Mori [Live at Vilar de Mouros Festival]
07. Blood Tells [Live at Vilar de Mouros Festival]
08. Proliferation [Live at Vilar de Mouros Festival]
09. Upon The Blood of Men [Live at Vilar de Mouros Festival]
+ Finisterra [video]
+ Luna [video]
+ Making Of Finisterra [video]


Memorial starts off with the good ole' Moonspell feeling through an instrumental track In Memorial, but once the second track Finisterra kicks in, one can be amazed how brutal it sounds compared to their earlier work. I have heard people compare this album to Daemonarch's Hermeticum and I can see why. The album definitely has a more brutal approach and has quite a few resemblances to Wolfheart and Hermeticum, even bordering black metal at times.

One of the first things you'll realize is Fernando's voice and how it's rawer than ever before. It seems to fit the majestic, symphonic, and movie-like soundscape well. I think the band wrote somewhere about being influenced by horror movie soundtracks and it does indeed sound exactly like that. The whole album sounds like a movie, each song being a different scene. The album has several instrumental tracks which are heaps better compared to all those filler instrumentals I bump into every now and then. Something tells me this album is going to have many classics.

Aside from the outstanding atmosphere, the good musicianship deserves a mention too. The guitar riffs and melodies are catchy and the drumming is excellent. The solos, although decent, don't really catch my attention for some reason. I wouldn't call this album very versatile but that's not necessarily a bad thing. It bothers me a little though since I view Moonspell as a band of diversity. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying it's repetitive or dull, it's just that I excpected a little more from these guys.

Those who are fans of Moonspell's earlier work are less likely to be disappointed by this album I think. It might take some time until you'll hear what the album really is about, so don't give up. Frankly, I felt a tad disappointed after the first listening, but that has changed. All in all, this is a solid album with a dark mystical atmosphere that is surely going to attract attention. If you like what you are reading, off you go to get Memorial.

Performance: 9
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Production: 10


Band profile: Moonspell
Album: Memorial


 


written by KryptoN | 30.05.2006


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.

Staff review by
Demonic Tutor

Rating:
8.8
The spell of the dark moon is back. Portugal's number one act returns with the anticipated "Memorial". An old fan of the band like me knows that Moonspell's motto is evolution. Thus, not two albums from them sound the same. Follow-up to 2005's "The Antidote" - which had taken a more direct approach to their music - this year's album definitely harbors the darker side of it, which will regroup fans of their darker period with enthusiasts of their more recent albums.

Read more ››
published 26.04.2006 | Comments (1)

Staff review by
Jeff

Rating:
9.0
One day your favourite band decides to change its music. They always get some new fans of course but in general the whiners win if you see what I mean and anyway I don't remember a lot combos that found an impressive success with their "new" musical orientation. Moonspell did that change too after two monumental albums, Wolfheart and Irreligious. With Sin/Pecado, the band did a radical turnover and it didn't convince me. However, they said lately that they wanted to do a real come back to their roots with their new album "Memorial". A lot of bands do that and you probably know that it is just words in general, so I was a bit doubtful. But I came the other day on their website and had the luck to listen to the sample of "Finisterra" and God it was right, at least for this song, Moonspell was back to their beginning and now that I have the album in my hand I can confirm that "Memorial" is a great album… welcome back Moonspell…

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published 26.04.2006 | Comments (0)

Staff review by
DerRozzengarten

Rating:
9.2
The previous year at the live show of Moonspell I was there, in the front line, shouting from time to time "Tenebrarum Oratorium", someone laughed, but Moonspell had kept this song as final, I conceived this live interpretation of this great song as a birthday present because at that very day I was celebrating my 20th birthday and I gave it all during the song. I remember Fernando Ribeiro had introduced this song as a new one, I didn't get the meaning back then since it was a composition coming from their "Under The Moonspell" days, but from the very first moment "Memorial" started unleashing its nocturnal melodies the night sky became too clear, only the spell of the moon could be cast upon us and the perfume of memories from the past was alluring the atmosphere.

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published 26.04.2006 | Comments (0)

Guest review by
Passenger

Rating:
9.4
I can't help starting this review by stating how disappointing 2006 has been so far for me. I've been trying, I've been trying to find some really great new albums and bands but, I don't know, maybe I've just listened to so much Metal in my life that it just doesn't surprised me as much as it used to. That or maybe there really hasn't been released any truly impressive album since January.

Read more ››
published 27.08.2006 | Comments (11)



Comments

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Comments: 6  
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Stigmatized - 02.08.2006 at 17:53  
I've had the chance to listen through this album a couple of times now. Great review, great album. Excellent atmosphere and I have agree that the instrumentals are outstanding.
Xtreme Jax - 02.08.2006 at 18:06  
Great review, i bought this album to see waht all the hype was about it and it really impressed me. It has great atmosphere and i love the instrumental track 'Proliferation'. Id rate it an 9
Damnated - 02.08.2006 at 18:47  
Great album, I was surprised to hear this Moonspell, they should really stick with this sound from now on, it is like they were born to play like this.
Stigmatized - 03.08.2006 at 15:39  
Written by Damnated on 02.08.2006 at 18:47

Great album, I was surprised to hear this Moonspell, they should really stick with this sound from now on, it is like they were born to play like this.


Are you a fan of any of their earlier material?
Damnated - 03.08.2006 at 16:07  
Written by Stigmatized on 03.08.2006 at 15:39

Written by Damnated on 02.08.2006 at 18:47

Great album, I was surprised to hear this Moonspell, they should really stick with this sound from now on, it is like they were born to play like this.


Are you a fan of any of their earlier material?


Wolfheart and Irreligious are my fav albums, but they sound more natural on this album.
Stigmatized - 03.08.2006 at 16:12  
Written by Damnated on 03.08.2006 at 16:07

Written by Stigmatized on 03.08.2006 at 15:39

Written by Damnated on 02.08.2006 at 18:47

Great album, I was surprised to hear this Moonspell, they should really stick with this sound from now on, it is like they were born to play like this.


Are you a fan of any of their earlier material?


Wolfheart and Irreligious are my fav albums, but they sound more natural on this album.


I see what you mean. I agree, this album is great.

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