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Críticas a Álbuns
Crítica a Álbum :: molllust - Schuld (2012)
2012-12-04 06:58:56 | Hugo Miguel Delgado

molllust (yes, with a lower m and triple l) is a six-piece act from Leipzig, Germany. Formed in 2010, the band's lineup features Janika Groß on vocals and piano, Frank Schumacher on electric guitar and ocasional vocals, Johannes Hank on bass, Tommaso Soru on drums, Sandrine B. on electric violin and Lisa H. on cello. As one might have guessed by now, this is no ordinary metal band - molllust describe themselves as playing opera metal, and that actually describes pretty accuratelly what their debut album Schuld sounds like. If the first bands that came to your mind were Nightwish or Avantasia, you're still very far from guessing what these guys sound like. We could say it's more like a softer version of Haggard, less orchestral and without the harsh voice, mixed with Therion's latest album, Les Fleurs Du Mal. But still, don't start jumping into conclusions! This is just a way of showing you where molllust's sound would best fit in, rest assured that Schuld is no copycat, but a very unique work.

The albums starts with Ouvertüre, an intro that actually introduces us to what we'll get in the album: classic moments turned darker when the electric instruments join in, mood swings, dark passages and powerful and eerie vocals. Sternennacht follows, a wonderful song full of enticing melodies from the classic instruments and with a great performance from Janika Groß - one of the many we'll hear throughout the album. Alptraum is a much darker song, full of mystery. The classic instruments make your senses tingle while the electic ones make it all hard, heavy and shady. Aufwind is somewhere in-between the previous 2 songs. Not as heavy as the last one, but still full of mystery and eeriness, and showing off again the amazing vocal skills of Janika Groß. Spiegelsee and Lied zur Nacht continue on the same line and then Puppentanz finally shows off Frank Schumacher's vocals, dueling Janika while the instruments play in a way that really make this song fit for a puppet dance. Frank Schumacher also sings in Tanz des Feuers, now on a more secondary role, backing up, supporting and filling where needed. Erinnerungen moves us back to the more classical-based songs, with Janika again under the highlights, singing sometimes almost unaccompanied. Schatten is another great song that start off as a classic tune but soon becomes something more when Frank joins in to sing along with Janika. The opera ends with Kartenhaus, another darker song with some tempo and mood swings.

The highlight of the album is Janika Groß with her astonishing vocal skills. She goes from a regular melodious singing style to operatic in an instant, always with great skill, and shines above everything and everyone else throughout the album. Her piano performances are also worth noticing, in perfect combination with Sandrine B.'s violin and Lise H.'s cello and creating beautiful classical moments. The remaining members' performances were less remarkable, but not in a bad way, just as a consequence of their less prominent role on the songs. They performed solidly and we even got a few glimpses of Frank Schumacher's voice, so they played their parts as supposed to.

The composition is very unlike what one would expect, since this album's a lot different from all the metal opera's we've heared in the past. Instead of making metal songs with operatic arrangements or elements, molllust made classic compositions with simple classic arrangements - as you might have noticed earlier, the only few classic instruments refered were a piano, a violin and a cello - and then adds the metal instruments whenever they feel it'll fit better. It's a completely different approach and a very honest and humble one, actually. Here we have no bombastic elements, no full choir or orchestra, no synths or layers of samples. Instead, they make classical compositions with just a soprano singer and less than a handful of classic instruments. And, when they feel things could be a little harsher, they simply add the electric ones, for some distortion. Such a simple and honest formula, right?

Of course, there is a downside to this kind of approach. If instead of making rock/metal songs with classic or operatic elements in it, you choose to make an opera with some metal in it, you must be aware that your fanbase will be less than the other way around. Let's face it: not every metalhead will like it, since it's not that metal, and you'll hardly make a lot of friends among opera fans also, since most of them won't stand metal at all. And opera isn't something your Average Joe will listen to on a daily basis, so Schuld won't be spinning regularly on everyone's cd players. Also, all songs are in german, so there's lots of people here that won't know what the songs are about, even when checking them at the booklet.

As far as production goes, everything is in place and sounding great. Somehow, they even managed to put a "live" feel in it, so at times you actually feel like you're seated in the middle of the opera house. It's just a shame to have this great work dented by some slightly-out-of-tune moments in a couple of songs. Not too much, but enough to notice, so someone should have been more thorough during the recording procedures and notice it and have it corrected. Opera is a very demanding genre, but that's still no excuse for letting things get recorded out of tune.

As way of a conclusion, I'd say this is one hell of a debut album with amazing composition and classical performances. Also, Bravo! to the band for having the guts to do it from a classic point of view and sticking to the plan instead of taking the predictable easy and pompous way, making metal songs with classic arrangements. It's a very risky move that won't get them as much fans as they could, and surely this isn't an album we'll listen to everyday - but if one happens to like the genre, it's guaranteed he'll sure enjoy listening to the album whenever he's in the mood for some real opera metal, so congrats for that, for the very original concept and for what seemed to us like a very honest approach. The album's main fault goes not to the band's performance nor to the composition, but to the production that should had been made in a more thoroughly fashion. Everything summed up, we'll rate molllust's debut self-released album Schuld 85 out of 100.

Rating: 85%

Schuld - album cover
06Lied zur Nacht
08Tanz der Feuers
VozJanika Groß | Frank Schumacher
GuitarraFrank Schumacher
BaixoJohannes Hank
BateriaRonny Garz
TecladoJanika Groß
ViolonceloLisa Hellner
molllust - band photo