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Magica: Wolves & Witches

I'm a sucker for anything that has to do with werewolves, so I was immediately intrigued by the latest from symphonic power/prog metallers Magica, titled Wolves & Witches. The band now finds themselves on AFM Records, and this new release is a concept album of sorts dealing with, well, you guessed it, werewolves and witches. Thanks to the solid vocals of Ana Mladinovici, you'll instantly think of acts such as Nightwish, Epica, After Forever, Echoes of Eternity, and Within Temptation, as her strong voice soars over beds of heavy guitar riffs, pounding rhythms, and symphonic keyboards. Guitarist Bogdan Costea is a real tasty player, his rhythm work crunchy, and his leads acrobatic and quite stunning at times. However, the production on the whole is rather lacking in spots, and Costea's riffs could have been cranked up in the mix a tad.

The songs themselves are strong and memorable, tunes like "Hold On Tight", "Don't Wanna Kill", and "Dark Secret" are filled with enough heavy riffs and the occasional complex musical passage to please the prog and power metal crowd, and Ana's vocal style will have all the gothic metal fans enjoying themselves immensely. Proggers will dig the symphonic "Just For Two Coins" as well as the instrumentals "Maiastra" and "Chitaroptera", the latter a real heavy prog-metal piece with complex riff-o-rama from Costea and some intense rhythms from bassist Valentin "IngerAlb" Zechiu & drummer Cristi "Beavis" Barla. Speaking of prog-metal, you can't go wrong with the intense "Until The Light Is Gone" or the orchestral metal sounds of "Mistress Of The Wind", which features some catchy riffing and great keyboard sounds courtesy of 6 Fingers.

Add in some great cover art (again, the werewolf stuff had me) and interesting lyrics, and you have a real decent release here. I'm deducting a half a point for the somewhat lackluster production, but otherwise these are good songs filled with great playing and excellent vocals. If you dig the female fronted gothic/symphonic/power/prog metal thing, you'll most certainly want to investigate Wolves & Witches. This fourth release from Magica show that these Romanians are well on their way to being serious players on the scene.

Track Listing

  1. Don't Wanna' Kill
  2. They Stole The Sun
  3. Hold On Tight
  4. Hurry Up Ravens
  5. Maiastra
  6. Dark Secret
  7. Just For Two Coins
  8. Until The Light Is Gone
  9. Chitaroptera
  10. Mistress Of The Wind

Added: June 10th 2009
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band's MySpace Page
Hits: 1712
Language: english

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