What do we have here? A beautiful atmospheric album from France, with lyrics taken from Northern European – Celtic mythology.
The stunning artwork, the black and white band photos and the song names prepare you for something far from the usual from this French group. And indeed, ‘Esyllt’ doesn’t disappoint. At times, the music transports you to some small coastal village of Bretagne, with the sea winds bringing memories of times gone past.
Dam Kat, female singer and one of the two main composers of the group has a beautiful voice that fits the music perfectly. The other main contributor, Gwalchmei Hengrist supports the music with some really tasty guitar solos, probably the highlight of this release. At the same time, long standing member, Loic Bléjean, makes the mix more interesting by adding some Uillean pipes and Low whistles, like at the beginning of ‘My Son’.
The longest song here, ‘The Battle’, starts with some beautiful keys, followed by some folk parts and later on, some heavier riffs – after all, it’s a battle! Similarly, the other longer pieces are all divided into parts and don’t outstay their welcome.
There is a sweet melancholy throughout the whole album, similar to that of PINK FLOYD and ANATHEMA’s releases. Other times, the passionate guitar playing brings CAMEL to mind. The music is mostly acoustic, but there are a few heavier segments. However, don’t expect the heaviness of modern folk metal bands. This one focuses more on the beauty of nature and the legends that have survived for hundreds of years from father to son or – more appropriately, due to Dam Kat’s vocals – from mother to daughter.
This is one of those albums that will accompany you when you are in one of those November moods. Recommended to fans of female vocals and atmospheric landscapes.