Silvery Moonbeams

1. The Banished Princess
2. Eclipse
3. Withered Lullabies
4. Sons of the Earth
5. Campeón
6. Stolen Innocence
7. My Dead Angel
8. I Know That I Know Nothing
9. I Need You to Need Me
10. Sadako's Wings of Hope
11. Polovtsian Dances
12. Solitude

Jesús Díez - Guitars and composition
Itea Benedicto - Vocals and composition
Javi Palacios - Bass
Alberto "AT" Izquierdo - Drums

The Shining Harmony of Universe (2008)

Rosa Maria Rodriguez - Orchestral Harp
Laura Rodriguez - Violin
Eva Badia - Cello
Roberto Zahonero - Flute
Emiliano Avilés, Alberto Yagüe, Fernando Asensi & Gloria Guerrero - Vocals/Choir

Produced by Jonathan Mazzeo & Niobeth
Lead vocals produced by Alessando Paolucci & Niobeth
Mixed by Fernano Asensi
Mastered by Mika Jussila
Cover art by Marta Nael
Video Produced by Estudio Click and Marcelo Galiano. With the collaboration of Hotel Santa Isabel at Albacete and the "Cuevas del Diablo" at Alcalá del Júcar (Albacete).

Released 19/9-2011
Reviewed 8/1-2012


Spanish band Niobeth are looking at the silvery moonbeams and dreaming up some epic music, if we are to believe the album cover artwork which is brilliant. A female fronted band who now has two albums under their belts but the question is if there will be any more as the band is reported in december to have disbanded due to internal conflict. Not having too much insight it seems like the rights owner Jesús Díez was asked by the label to continue the band but says in a statement that he formed the band with singer Itea and if they cannot work together it is better to put the band to death. Too bad if they are as good as reviewers (the two that could be found in a jungle of illegal possibilities to steal the music) says that it is a quite brilliant album. Then both the artwork and the music would be brilliant I said and felt depressed over the possibilities to download music without paying for it, maybe those people who do should be forced to work at their workplace for free as well, after all working is also immaterial. So if you don’t want to pay for immaterial rights, why should you earn anything for providing it as well? music or otherwise. That was a parenthesis from a depressing web search on the band’s name and album title and has nothing really to do with this album. Nevertheless, there is an album out there since september that you can either buy or steal so is it anything to have?

Before I answer that, lets have a look at what we can expect in terms of music. Gothic metal with soprano vocals is probably how most would have described them and to appear knowledgeable lets say a few names like Operatika, Nightwish (before Hietala), Edenbridge, Epica, After Forever, The Gathering, you want more? I will not give you more names. The first mentioned band sounds much alike what we get to hear from this band. Another description of how the band sounds would be to look at the cover art, they sound like they look. But soprano fronted power metal with symphonic undertones and a focus on pompous arrangements would be a good description. Well produced with a clean and powerful modern sound, very harmonic the way that a general frameworks binds together a diverse range of songs. It ranges from straight metal songs, to epic pieces, some calmer parts and some loans from many different areas of music is also to be found, all vocals are not soprano, there are some “normal” female vocals and some male as well as some spoken word, many choirs. It plays for a whole hour and in that hour we get to hear twelve songs that show a rather big diversity in style but still quite coherent thanks to a common sound.

Majestic is a word that springs to mind when I first hear this music, big arrange-ments and the soprano vocals along with choirs makes it sound big. The fact that the music is laid in many layers also strengthen this feel of grandeur. The singer Itea is also quite good, I would say that she is almost as good as she thinks she looks, almost. But I think this is an impressive piece of work, at least as good as the latest and greatest from Nightwish but also the best soprano fronted metal album since The Calling by Operatika which was released and reviewed back in 2008. And speaking of greatness, let me point at the best tracks: the second track Eclipse is a catchy great tune and the adaptation of Polovtsian Dances is just brilliant, those are my highlights in this album that has a lot more than the two I just mentioned.

If I am to be the grumpy reviewer for a while though, this album is too long which detracts slightly from its brilliance. I think they should have trimmed away about ten minutes as it is about that much of the album that I spend wanting to listen to something else and trying to put together the jigsaw that is publishing this web publication, which of course means not paying attention to the album. And parts where I am not paying attention to the album is parts that is ordinary or just lacking in interest. Still, that is not such a big deal in the end because overall this album is great and I think a farewell can be said in much worse ways than this. Sure it wasn’t meant to be a farewell but that is what it ended up being, too bad.


Label: Dreamcell 11/WormHoledeath/Aural Music Group
Three similar bands: Operatika/Nightwish/Epica
Rating: HHHHHHH (5/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm

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