Delain - Moonbathers
A Clockwork Opera vocalist Vickie Harley on how Delain have matured, grown and adapted to change on Moonbathers
Originally formed as keyboardist Martijn Westerholt’s studio project of guest musicians, Delain has morphed into a force to be reckoned with in the symphonic metal world. Having played some of the biggest metal festivals in Europe (Download, Hellfest and Bloodstock to name a few) and toured extensively, supporting heavyweights Sabaton and Nightwish, Delain are fast becoming one of the biggest and most sought after names in the genre. Marking their 10 year anniversary, Moonbathers is a hallmark of their signature gothic style with catchy choruses and lush orchestration. Uniting the bombastic nature Lucidity with the riff driven sound of The Human Contradiction and occasional synth pop twinges from We Are the Others, Moonbathers is a credit to the band’s maturity, growth and adaptability to change and blend genres.
Opening track Hand of Gold (featuring Arch Enemy’s Alissa White-Gluz),The Glory and the Scum and Danse Macabre exemplify this perfectly: boasting dramatic orchestrations befitting a 19th century concert hall alongside Charlotte Wessels’ powerful, unrelenting vocals and fierce, chugging sections (no doubt inspired by their latest member, MaYan and Purest of Pain guitarist Merel Bechtold).
Hurricane is an admirable track, but doesn’t quite stand up to previous ballads like I Want You (We Are the Others) and Start Swimming (April Rain). Additionally, Queen cover Scandal is a little lacklustre, and pales in comparison to the previous covers of songs they have done, such as Cordell by The Cranberries (featured on 2013’s Interlude).
Vocally, Pendulum is a definite stand out: Wessels plummets into the bottom depths of her register and rises to her upper range as gracefully as the track manages to develop from a piano ballad into a full blown orchestral epic. Also worth a mention are the tracks Fire with Fire and Turn the Lights Out for their killer choruses; in particular the gloriously orchestrated, semi operatic middle section from the latter.
However, the standout track is the single Suckerpunch, which blends intense, catchy choruses, heavy guitar tones and epic, cinematic orchestral arrangements, epitomising the varied blend of sounds featured on the album.
Though inconsistent in its track quality, Moonbathers is an indication of how much Delain have matured as a band, and intertwines previous album sounds and genres into one neat package. Along with their extensive touring and six previous studio albums, Delain have staked their rightful claim to the top: becoming one of the world’s premiere symphonic metal bands with a bright and successful future ahead of them.
Words: Vickie Harley
Check our Vickie's band, A Clockwork Opera, below.