Dark Moor – “Ars Musica” (2013)

Label: Scarlet Records

Review by Tony Cannella

Remember when the Spanish symphonic metal band Dark Moor had a female singer? It seems like ages ago since the band released their last album “The Gates of Oblivion” with Elisa C. Martin on vocals. Actually it was 2002 and it was such a great album, as were the two that preceded it. Unfortunately Elisa departed soon after the release of “The Gates of Oblivion” and was replaced by the male vocalist Alfred Romero and he has remained a fixture in the band ever since. That is not to criticize the band. Alfred Romero has added his own unique style to the Dark Moor sound and he has been with them long enough to carve his own niche as their lead singer. Plus, he does a damn good job. Now the band returns with their 9th album “Ars Musica”. On this album Dark Moor utilizes female singers on background vocals and it gives the material some richness and enhances the music and songs.

The intro “Ars Musica” sets an eerie, cinematic vibe and segues into the bouncy, power metal drive of “First Lance of Spain”. This song has an extremely memorable chorus and a strong melody. The guitar harmonies begin the ultra-melodic mid-tempo number “This Is My Way”. This song has a high accessibility factor and could appeal to a wide audience. The tempo picks up with the next track “The Road Again”. This is one of the best songs here and the presence of female opera singers on background vocals only enhances the song. “Together As Ever” is another melodic masterpiece and just a great all around song. Other highlights include: “The City of Peace”, “Living In A Nightmare” and the Spanish language “El Ultimo Rey”. Dark Moor is truly one of the most symphonic bands out there and they really are enamored with the whole symphony thing and they do get a lot out of it. The whole thing is completed with the final two bonus tracks, and acoustic version of “The Road Again” and the orchestral version of “Living in a Nightmare”.

In my opinion, “Ars Musica” is the best album that Dark Moor has done in many years, certainly the best that they’ve done with Alfred Romero on vocals but I am sure that can be debated amongst their fans. Wherever your loyalties lie, Dark Moor has always and will continue to supply symphonic metal majesty with their music.

Rating – 85/100

 

Tracklist

  1. Ars Musica
  2. First Lance of Spain
  3. This Is My Way
  4. The Road Again
  5. Together As Ever
  6. The City of Peace
  7. Gara & Jonay
  8. Living In A Nightmare
  9. El Ultimo Rey
  10. Saint James’ Way
  11. Asturias
  12. The Road Again (acoustic)
  13. Living In A Nightmare (orchestral)

 

Line Up

  • Alfred Romero – Vocals
  • Enrik Garcia – Guitars
  • Mario Garcia Gonzales – Bass
  • Roberto Cappa – Drums

 

Links

Facebook * Twitter * Site