October 25, 2007

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Moonspell, Under Satanae
SPV Records, Nov. 6
BNothing like a little Beelzebub worship to inspire a bunch of guys to reach for their best. Memorial, the previous effort from Portuguese goth-plodders Moonspell, did little to reduce the comfortable lead My Dying Bride and Fields of the Nephilim had over them, but Under Satanae is another story. Where Memorial was unremarkable to the extreme (anyone with lungs can bellow along to Neurosis muck) this one’s full of experimentation. Granted, the experiments involve flutes and Angus Young hammer-on guitars (“Opus Diabolicum”), but regardless of the typecasting of these tangents they’re pretty cool. That would include the intro, interpolating a take on the Muslim call to prayer, which should and will have you thinking William Peter Blatty – homework’s been done, you see. The second song (I refuse to risk freeing Pazuzu by incanting any more of these suspicious Latin titles) fades off with a very capable female singer scatting in Arabic. B+ Eric W. Saeger