Album Review by Mick Hezemans

Moonshade is a Portuguese five-piece Melodic Death metal band formed in 2010. As We Set The Skies Ablaze is their second full-length following 2018’s Sun Dethroned.

Album opener Epitaph quickly gets into a tremolo riff with matching double kicks and sets the tone for what’s to come on the album. A thrashy verse leads into a chunky riff and the chorus has some nice choirs and synths to add an uplifting tone

The second track Valley Of Dying Stars was my favourite. It opens with guitar leads, builds with drums and the synths match the guitars to build an epic intro. The verse hits suddenly with blast beats and a speed riff and a triplet-heavy bridge before the leads from the intro come back to make a super catchy chorus that has some operatic vocals. I found all the separate parts swell together nicely and manage to keep you focused through the whole song.

Track 5, Artemis veers into more traditional/power metal territory with a slower pace and clean vocals, and a steady down-picked verse riff which builds into a harsher, chanting chorus.

The next track flips the format and starts heavy Chugg, harsh vocal verse, and clean singing chorus before leading into a faster metal-core sounding second half. The two halves kinda reminded me of old versus new Parkway Drive.

Album closer, A Treatise Of Human Nature starts acoustic then moves into a string-heavy verse with some real bass and an epic power ballad chorus, and a heavier harsh vocal session.

Overall it’s a really solid album, with great musicianship throughout, an excellent production job and I’m fairly certain a pre-slant lyrical theme about Titans and Greek Gods. Some tracks tended to blend together a little and multiple listens didn’t really unveil Anything I’d missed the last time as it’s a Melo Death album that stays within those boundaries but if that’s your particular flavour of metal, I think you’d be really happy with this one. 6.5/10

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