Wednesday, 24th January 2018. 2:47:02am ET
Reviews CD Reviews Gothic Qntal- The Silver Swan


                                                         

Artist: Qntal
CD Title: The Silver Swan
Label: Dancing Ferret Discs
Reviewer: Matthew Johnson
Date: 2-19-07

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On Qntal's fifth studio album, the blend of electronics, Medieval instrumentation and stunningly pretty female vocals is still in effect, though the synthesizers and programming seem to be playing more of an ancillary role this time around. Rarely if ever do they take center stage; as in much of fellow modern Medievalist Loreena McKennitt's work, there's no doubt that they're there, but the richly layered pads are subtle, adding depth and atmosphere to Syrah's gliding soprano and Michael Popp's arsenal of Middle Eastern stringed instruments. "Von Den Elben" is a notable exception, full of synthesized harps and cinematic choral effects. In addition to all the ethereal loveliness fans have come to expect, Qntal also offers a few dance tracks, perfect for getting your groove on at the next Renaissance Faire. Pipes wail in time to the tinkling of the tambourine on the upbeat but somehow delicate "Lingua Mendax," and "292" is all drums and strums, with the twang of electric guitar thrown in to balance the buzzing chanter of the shalmei, a type of Islamic woodwind instrument, in a dizzying blend of ancient and modern, east and west. As one of the most established bands in Europe's Medieval darkwave scene, Qntal has a well-defined sound, and there's little here to surprise long-time fans of the project, but if you've already been seduced by the trio's work you'll find their fifth album to be just as engaging as their first four. Visit the band online at www.qntal.net for more information, video clips, and tour dates.


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