CHANTS OF MALDOROR - Every Mask Tells The Truth
Releasing a follow up after a critically acclaimed debut is always a tough nut to crack. With "Every mask tells the truth" Chants of Maldoror have passed the test with grace. 50 minutes of uncompromised arty goth-rock, that's what this album offers you. 5 years have passed since "Thy hurting heaven" and they spend their time well. The Bauhaus and Christian Death influences are still prominent, but Chants of Maldoror have managed to give it a distinct twist. Preceded by French vocals "Himmel balsam" kicks off the album. A dramatic, dark song. Vocalist Adolphe's diction still resembles that of Peter Murphy. The lyrics are elegant and poetic. Raw synths and dirty guitars dominate on "Wouned canvas", the drama is lifted to higher levels. On "Interlude I" the detachted vocals of Adolphe are at the forefront. The same goes for "Cruel with us" when he sings: "no place can hide you from our words". The melancholic guitars add a lot to the song's message. The religiously inspired "where the lord lies" is a nice step up to the lengthy and spiritual "Sometimes a poison". This alternate song with it's changes in tempo and meter and graceful piano sounds like a melodramatic theatre play. The quiet beauty of the instrumental "Interlude II" features lovely interplay between percussion and guitar. On "Justine" however the tempo goes up. Swirling guitars, driving percussion, those are also the ingredients of "A white holocaust", the fastest and most aggressive song on the album. After the darkly seductive "On the willings", "Interlude III" treats you with another sensitive instrumental. A remarkable song is the cover of Ultravox' "We stand alone". While staying relatively close to the original, Chants of Maldoror have managed to offer a pleasant new interpretation. "Every mask tells the truth" proves that this Italian band is no passer by in the goth-rock scene. Although it took them quite some time to release a second album, they've now established themselves among the major contemporary bands in this genre.
Label: Strobelight Records
Genre: gothic (gothic rock / (dark)wave / postpunk / batcave)
Review by: Nightporter