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   WUTHERING HEIGHTS
To Travel For Evermore
2002
Sensory
http://www.wuthering-heights.dk


rating: 4/5

1. Behind Tearstained Ice
2. The Nevershining Stones
3. Dancer In The Light
4. Lost Realms
5. Battle Of The Seasons
6. A Sinner's Confession
I: Dawn / II: The Child In The Sun / III: The Man In The Moon / IV: Dusk 7. See Tomorrow Shine
8. Through Within To Beyond
9. River Oblivion
The Danish Wuthering Heights has some epic symphonic power metal to offer. The founding member of the band is Erik Ravn (guitar, bass, keyboards) who is also responsible for most of the songwriting. Other members are as follows: Krille Andren (vocals), Rune S. Brink (keyboards), Henrik Flyman (guitars), Morten Sörensen (drums) and Lorenzo Deho as special guest bassist. The album was produced by Tommy Newton and it took the band almost two years to complete it. The songs are somewhat complex with fast symphonic parts and more mellow parts alternating. At times it gets a little progressive, but only a tad. The music also has some folk influences and occasionally it's possible to hear even some polka-ish rhythms and flamenco-flavored acoustic guitars.

The album starts out with a 2-minute intro which offers us nothing out of the ordinary really. The first actual song is "The Nevershining Stones" that tries it's best to grab you with it's semi-catchy chorus and partly succeeds and the happy sounding guitar solo is surprisingly memorable. The next track, "Dancer in the Light" offers the to-become-typical-for-Wuthering-Heights alternation between heavier parts and beautiful acoustic parts. Next up is the 8 minute epic "Lost Realms" which starts out acousticly, and stays somewhat mellow throughout the whole song coloured with what might be called troubadourish playing at times. The next one is an instrumental, "Battle of the Season" that lasts for over nine minutes. This proves to be the most unnecessary track on the album. Nine minutes of, should I say pointless shredding with "Yngwie" written all over it, although I have heard much worse stuff in the same vein. Luckily that one is followed with yet another epic, "A Sinner's Confession" which is divided into four parts and includes, in addition to sort of traditional power metal, also some progressive moments. "See Tomorrow Shine" is probably the most straight-forward track on the album that also includes some folkish, medeival influences. The album gets its finishing touch with "Through Within To Beyond" and the acoustic "River Oblivion" with it's flamenco touch.

Although the alternating parts are done with style and talent, the wholeness of the album seems to suffer a bit due to it's scatteredness. The production hasn't actually improved at all since the debut album, quite the opposite really. I'd hate to say poor, but it needs some improvement. So, all the elements for a great album are present: catchy power metal melodies, a proper singer, good guitars, classical, medieval, folk and progressive elements and the majestic keyboards but still Wuthering Heights doesn't for some reason reach the top.. All in all, the album is complex and therefore hard to digest on one listen, which isn't the case with already too many power metal bands today. Then again Wuthering Heights doesn't quite represent the typical path of power metal. It's actually very difficult to name band you could compare Wuthering Heights to, Blind Guardian probably being the most obvious exception.

submitted by Aleksi 01.01.2003

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