Label : Napalm Records

Review by Tony Cannella

The German/Norwegian outfit Leaves’ Eyes released their debut album “Lovelorn” back in 2004. Since then they have continued to churn out great symphonic metal releases one after the other. Now, on their fourth studio album, the band just may have released their most ambitious and different album to date, “Meredead”. “Spirit’s Masquerade” opens things and it more than proves that Leaves’ Eyes are in fine form. “Étain” is next and keeps things operating smoothly. The third track “Velvet Heart” has a great almost commercial vibe to it and would make a great single, in my opinion. “Krakevisa” is next and is Leaves’ Eyes take on a traditional Norwegian tune. A cover of the Mike Oldfield (of “Tubular Bells” – the Exorcist theme fame) song “To France” is up next and is a strong rendition of the song. Alex Krull’s production as always is strong and while he does show up once in a while on vocals, it seems as though he is stepping aside and letting Liv Kristine take the helm as the primary vocalist. On the almost 9-minute epic “Sigrlinn” Liv is joined by her sister Carmen (from Midnattsol) on lead vocals, creating one of the strongest moments on “Meredead”. Other highlights include: “Meredead”, “Empty Horizon” and the excellent closer, “Tell Tale Eyes”. Leaves’ Eyes are also joined by a host of guests this time around. In addition to Carmen, the band is joined by members of the band Elfenthal and the Lingua Mortis Orchestra among others. The limited edition version of “Meredead” comes with a live DVD of the band tearing it up at the Metal Female Voices festival in 2010, a bonus track (“Sorhleod”) and some very cool packaging. I would definitely recommend this version. “Meredead” is an album that simply does not let up. It’s true that “Meredead” is perhaps their most unique album to date, but it is still unmistakably Leaves’ Eyes. This is an album that brings Symphonic Metal to a whole new level.

Rating – 95/100

 

Tracklist

  1. Spirit’s Masquerade
  2. Étain
  3. Velvet Heart
  4. Krakevisa
  5. To France
  6. Meredead
  7. Sigrlinn
  8. Mine Taror er ei Grimme
  9. Empty Horizon
  10. Veritas
  11. Nystev
  12. Tell-Tale Eyes
  13. Sorhleod (Limited Edition Bonus Track)

 

Line Up

  • Liv Kristine Espenæs Krull  – Vocals
  • Alexander Krull – Vocals
  • Thorsten Bauer – Guitar, Bass
  • Sander van der Meer – Guitar
  • Roland Navratil – Drums

 

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