Moonlight Haze – Lunaris
Release Date: 12/06/2020
Running Time: 51:46
Review by Tsarina Wilson
Moonlight Haze consists of Chiara Tricarico (ex-Temperance) on vocals, Giulio Capone on vocals/drums/keyboards, Alessandro Jacobi (also of Elvenking) on bass, Alberto Melinato and Marco Falanga on guitars. This is the second album from the Italian band in quite quick time, as far as albums go anyway, their first release which was “De Rerum Natura” in 2019, certainly put them on the map of great quality music, so I had high hopes for this release. This new album, “Lunaris”, was mixed and mastered by Simone Mularoni at the Domination Studio (San Marino). The artwork and graphics (which are immense) are by Beatrice Damori.
Their music is not only symphonic, it’s up-beat, catchy, enthusiastic, and has vocals that make the hairs on the back of your arms stand on end. It has power and passion which shines through in abundance, and is an amazing blend of metal, folk, electronics, with one track, ‘Birth And Death’, even featuring Elvenking’s violinist, Fabio Lethien Polo.
The opening track, ‘Till The End’ bursts in with a, “hello! I’m here” feeling! It has a great tempo, is catchy, full of energy and doesn’t let up all the way through. Chiara’s vocals are so strong and powerful, and her range is epic. Added to that are great harmonies, and guitar riffs that go so fast it makes my fingers hurt just thinking about them! The ending of the song proves already what a great set of lungs Chiara has, the power in her voice is incredible!
Each track is a mini story within itself, and although some of the tracks are fast pace and can leave you breathless, you do get small lulls in between. But don’t be fooled into thinking you’ll be able to sit and relax, as you wont be left with time to do that! This album will have you sat up and listening, waiting to see where it’s off to next. ‘Under your Spell’, is another stand out track for me. It starts off melodic and is gentle but very powerful, and again the range of Chiara’s voice is out of this world! Add to that brilliant guitar riffs, and you have a very powerful rock ballad.
I was a little taken back by ‘Enigma’, as rather than being sung in English, it is in Italian, but the power and passion shines out in bucket loads. Even though I couldn’t understand the lyrics, it still gives you such a vibe. I am one of those who listen to the album without looking at the track running order, so I was pleased to discover that the last track on the album is the English version of the same song. This wouldn’t be out of place in a rock opera and the immense drumming leave you breathless, thinking ‘seriously how the heck do you play drums that quick?’. Just wow!
I must admit I listen to my music a tad loud, and on a good set of speakers, but, my word, some of the drumming had my chest hurting! You can feel it inside. That and the guitar riffs almost blew the speakers! And I can’t say enough how fabulous the vocals are, going from gritty to operatic in a heartbeat. This is so apparent in ‘The Dangerous Art of Overthinking’ which I have to say is my favourite track. You start off with operatic background and crazy drumming. Calm down to almost ‘monkish’ undertones, then BAM! Back into it! Who needed to catch their breath anyway?! This would make an epic horror film score, the vocals leaping from powerful, to growls, to operatic, and back to ‘monkish’ in seconds, which leave you wandering what the hell is going on! You get chance for a quick gasp of air then off it goes again. It also has some crazy synthesiser twists which really add the icing on the metal cake. I like to call this track the ‘Beauty and the Beast’ of the album.
There are calmer tracks, like ‘Of Birth and Death’, that gives you a folkish interlude, which you’ll be grateful for as track 10 ‘Nameless City’ is 7 minutes and 34 seconds long, and once again leads you on a twisted journey! It starts off all nice and calm before throwing you into the deep end with a sudden change of pace. Operatic vocals switch to normal, and the whole track sounds like they have an orchestra and a team of backing vocals all joining in. And, once again, it’s littered with brilliant drumming, guitars and harmonies, and the synthesizer in the background.
If you wanted dull and boring then stay away from “Lunaris”, as that’s one thing this album definitely isn’t! But if you want powerful, intense, complex, and outside of the box, then hold on tight and enjoy the ride.
01. Till The End
02. The Rabbit Of The Moon
04. Under Your Spell
06. Wish Upon A Scar
07. The Dangerous Art of Overthinking
08. Without You
09. Of Birth and Death
10. Nameless City
11. Enigma (English Version)
Chiara Tricarico: vocals
Giulio Capone: drums, keyboards
Marco Falanga: guitars
Alberto Melinato: guitars
Alessandro Jacobi: bass
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