By now, when the name Moonspell is said aloud, you should all know who is being spoken of. Moonspell is approaching their 30th year in the metal world. HERMITAGE is the band’s 13th full-length studio album. Unbeknownst to some, Moonspell has undoubtedly made their mark as metal titans on this planet.
I cannot say that I am familiar with their entire catalog. I had gotten into the band early on with a couple of the early releases. And just like that, I let them fade away. So I have always enjoyed Moonspell’s music, only not in its entirety. This album has slightly altered my perception once again.
While I thoroughly enjoyed the last full album by Moonspell with 1755, it was listened to a few times and set upon the shelf. I believe that also may change with HERMITAGE. As I first gave this a listen, I could sense something I had not with a Moonspell album before. The early single releases were, at the time, a hit or miss factor for me. A couple tended to be good while a couple came off as so-so.
Now I see the light so-to-speak. The singles meld into the album as a cohesive mold of metal purity. HERMITAGE sees Moonspell escaping into the beautiful darkness that they are most well known for in the confines of a richly darkened gothic metal sound, all the while not forgetting their underground heavy metal influences.
The tracks here run the gambit of epic to bombastic to somber. They do tend to cover all the bases here. This album seems to get better and better each time through. There is enough heaviness for those who need things a bit heavier and plenty of melancholic melodies for those who do not. A great listen for whatever mood you may have. At this point, I just want to keep this one going. When you hear the term Gothic Dark Metal, HERMITAGE is what they mean!
Pedro Paixão – Keyboards, Samples, Programming
Fernando Ribeiro – Vocals
Ricardo Amorim – Guitars
Aires Pereira – Bass
Hugo Ribeiro – Drums