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  • Writer's pictureEryk The Strange

Moonspell - From Down Below DVD Review

Its badass enough that Portuguese metal masters Moonspell got to do a show 80 meters below the surface in a cave. If you've been following me for awhile, you know I have a soft spot for that band, so as soon as it was announced that it was filmed and put on DVD and vinyl, you know I had to pre-order it. Unfortunately there were some international shipping delays, so I just got it today.

What an amazing performance! I can't imagine how incredible it must have felt to be in that audience. It had to have been an absolutely life changing experience. But watching it on a DVD from the comfort of my own home is maybe almost as good.

While I find everything that Moonspell does to be fantastic, one thing it seems like they really excel at is their live performances. I adore their studio work, but you just get a whole other level of energy and emotion from a live performance. Especially in such an incredible location.

Every member of the band is essential. But in some ways, I feel like Ricardo stole the show. Some of the sounds he can get out of his guitar are just so velvety smooth and beautiful. I also feel like in the past he was a little more shy in the use of his vocals, but has gained more confidence. I heard it on the Hermitage album, but doing it live is a different thing. This is something I really like. With a voice like that, I feel like he's been somewhat underutilized for a long time.

Hermitage is just such a great record two and a half decades in the making. This band has come so far, and has evolved so much. I've been following them since 2010 or so, and even since then they just have even better. Their sound has developed so much and they're all so talented and painfully underrated.

Even though their following has grown exponentially, a majority of the time when I mention them, even within metal communities, people still don't know who they are. I can't figure out why.

Everything they do is only bigger and better than their last release. I believe their last big producrd recorded live performance was "Lisboa Under The Spell". Which is absolutely fantastic, but this outdoes that. There's so many different camera angles, shots of the caves, footage of the crowd, and they just really hit every nail on the head.

My only criticism is in how the footage was edited. I didn't like how there were some flashes of the music videos, especially in "Common Prayer" and "Hermit Saint" I'm here to see the performance. If I wanted to see that, I'd go watch the music video. Also some of the transitions were kind of jumpy and not as smooth as I would have liked. But that's just personal preference.

I'm still sad that their US tour this pas5 year got canceled, but getting to watch this made up for it. I also got the vinyl, but I'll save that treat for another day. This is an absolutely incredible live performance to watch, and if you haven't seen it yet, I highly recommend checking it out. Even more so if you aren't familiar with this band. Watch this, and you'll understand why their career has lasted almost thirty years. This is without a doubt one of the absolute best bands that existed in the nineties and are still around today.

Eternally under the spell.


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