Review 1421 : WitcheR – Lélekharang – English

WitcheR comes out of the shadows again to announce their third album.

Created in 2010 in Hungary, the duo composed of Roland Nebauer (vocals/guitar/drums, Frozen Wreath, Vrag) and Karola Gere (keyboards, ex-Trollheimen) continues its partnership with Filosofem Records for the release of Lélekharang.

The soft piano introduction gives us time to enjoy the artwork of Grafit és Hamu which announces the album’s general atmosphere, and the dark Hamvak – Ashes quickly confirms the sound’s darkness. The majestic and oppressive tones lets keyboards offer an airy dimension, completed by raw screams and some more soothing choirs, then the rhythmic continues to rage before a slight lull which lets Lélekharang – Soul Bell begin, anchoring the eponymous composition in the purest melancholy. Even when saturation resurfaces, the sound remains extremely soft and mystical, letting chimes ring out before vocal parts add a touch of darkness to the sublime riffs. The band unveils more aggressive and martial tones on Csendesen – Peacefully, letting double kick and orchestrations meet to create a vindictive duet before making room for vocals, which brilliantly drives a softer but equally dark rhythm. The song will suddenly stop to let Hazateres – Homecoming come to the world wrapped in a haunting atmosphere which imperceptibly strengthens, then it breaks to let keyboards bewitch us again before coming back more intensely. The album ends with Moonlight Sonata Op. 27. No. 2. I. Adagio sostenuto, a very faithful and melancholic cover of the German classical composer Ludwig van Beethoven, whose atmosphere fits perfectly with the mood of this album.

The strength of WitcheR comes from its dark and melancholic atmosphere guided by airy riffs. But keyboards also play a very important role on Lélekharang, maybe even more than on the previous releases, making this album a real treasure.


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