Rating:
8.3
Wuthering Heights - Salt
26 March 2010


01. Away!
02. The Desperate Poet
03. The Mad Sailor
04. The Last Tribe (Mother Earth)
05. Tears
06. Weather The Storm
07. The Field
08. Water Of Life
09. Lost At Sea
10. Sympathy [Uriah Heep cover] [bonus]


"Abra-macabra, baby, here we go!"

The highly innovative Wuthering Heights offer us yet another astonishing piece of folk flavoured power/progressive metal in the album Salt. Never a band to resort to the downtrodden clichés of the oft criticized power metal style, they continue to push the boundaries into heavier and more whimsical territory. So how will this album fare?

Salt is an interesting turn of events in that the band somewhat forgo their prior thematic elements, which consistently showed off their creative flair for songwriting, instead to turn for something more akin to what you may find on a Running Wild album. Certainly this album comes off as less progressive and more straightforward power metal. The intricate attention to detail is still present, so to is the folk tinge that makes up part of the bands character, but the music seems to be less whimsical; it's rather more deliberate in its direction.

It seems that this was an attempt to partake of the growing fad of "Pirate Metal" that has graced us with bands such as the comical Alestorm. However, Salt is by no means a cheese-laden affair: Wuthering Heights offer us a rather different perspective on the theme, one much more serious and reflective. Indeed, no band has sailed the seven seas with more style since the glory days of Running Wild. Bringing their unique sound to such territory may be considered as compromising of said unique sound but it clearly serves to bolster the reputation of something which had recently been the subject of ridicule.

In terms of performance, the band is top notch as always, the performance of vocalist Patrik Johansson never ceases to amaze and guitarist Martin Arendal gives the music its heavy/power metal edge. Drummer Morten Gade Sørensen is consistent, though a little difficult to make out as the production is not as crisp as on previous albums.

There's not much here in way of filler, except perhaps "Weather The Storm," with obvious highlights being the subtly cheesy yet philosophically inclined "The Mad Sailor," and the ode to nature that is "The Last Tribe (Mother Earth)." The epic finale "Lost At Sea" is a truly ambitious effort, and the previous folky interlude "Water Of Life" is the closest thing you'll find to a sea-shanty on the album, a short guilty pleasure.

What Salt somewhat lacks is the same originality and excellence of song writing that made the band's previous efforts so enjoyable. That said, this album is anything but of poor quality, Wuthering Heights manage to always be consistent and Salt is no exception.

Performance: 9
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Production: 8


Band profile: Wuthering Heights
Album: Salt


 


written by R'Vannith | 29.03.2011


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.



Comments

‹‹ Back to the Reviews
Comments: 6  
Users visited: 41  
Search this topic:  


fbmiranda7 - 31.03.2011 at 01:46  
LOVE THIS ALBUMN!!!!!
GT - 01.04.2011 at 13:58  
Nice review, eventhough I absolutely adore this album and therefore disagree about the weak songwriting I also enjoy "Weather The Storm", but I can see why you consider it to be the weakest
Zergaloth - 01.04.2011 at 18:38  
Don't agree at all about the songwriting, and even less about this being an attempt to partake in the Pirate Metal fad. Wuthering Heights have always been singing about travelling, loneliness, being lost, ... The album always revolved around a certain element as well, this time it's water, though that doesn't matter at all. But there is nothing piratey here. For me, the sea in all of these songs is nothing more than the Sea of Life.
R'Vannith - 02.04.2011 at 05:57  
Written by Zergaloth on 01.04.2011 at 18:38

Don't agree at all about the songwriting, and even less about this being an attempt to partake in the Pirate Metal fad. Wuthering Heights have always been singing about travelling, loneliness, being lost, ... The album always revolved around a certain element as well, this time it's water, though that doesn't matter at all. But there is nothing piratey here. For me, the sea in all of these songs is nothing more than the Sea of Life.


To be fair I suppose it's more about 'Sailors' than 'Pirates', though I don't see all that much of a difference. I agree about your 'Sea of Life' interpretation, but they had to put that in some sort of context, and that context I think somewhat resembles what is commonly used in 'Pirate Metal'. As I said though, they have something with much more depth to say within that context.
snipo101 - 19.06.2011 at 06:19  
Weather the Storm? Filler? I'm sorry, what? That song has some of the greatest atmosphere in the entire album. The lyrics, though simpler, stuck to me as much if not more than any of their other songs because of their delivery and the way any of us can relate to them- who hasn't had to look to friendship in order to persevere through difficult times?

I don't agree that Salt lacks excellent songwriting. The lyrics and their delivery alone put most metal bands to shame. The guitar leads unforgettable melodies, and the bass and drums never fail to compliment them incredibly.

When I first heard this album, I had the same problem as I'm assuming you had- I was fresh out of The Shadow Cabinet, and I was expecting more of the the guns blazing, ludicrous, and fantastic explosion that it provided. I couldn't comprehend them releasing anything but just that, and when I heard Salt for the first time, I was unpleasantly surprised. As I gave Salt more of a chance, I learned to appreciate it for its more purposeful delivery that allows more maturity. And I like it when I can listen to a band over time and notice how it perfects its sound.
R'Vannith - 19.06.2011 at 14:10  
Written by snipo101 on 19.06.2011 at 06:19

Weather the Storm? Filler? I'm sorry, what? That song has some of the greatest atmosphere in the entire album. The lyrics, though simpler, stuck to me as much if not more than any of their other songs because of their delivery and the way any of us can relate to them- who hasn't had to look to friendship in order to persevere through difficult times?

I don't agree that Salt lacks excellent songwriting. The lyrics and their delivery alone put most metal bands to shame. The guitar leads unforgettable melodies, and the bass and drums never fail to compliment them incredibly.

When I first heard this album, I had the same problem as I'm assuming you had- I was fresh out of The Shadow Cabinet, and I was expecting more of the the guns blazing, ludicrous, and fantastic explosion that it provided. I couldn't comprehend them releasing anything but just that, and when I heard Salt for the first time, I was unpleasantly surprised. As I gave Salt more of a chance, I learned to appreciate it for its more purposeful delivery that allows more maturity. And I like it when I can listen to a band over time and notice how it perfects its sound.


I found 'Weather the Storm' to be the weaker track of the album but I agree with you it does have a very atmospheric sound about it, can't say it really caught my attention though.

The songwriting on this one does indeed put a lot of bands to shame but I just find it too simplistic in comparison to 'The Shadow Cabinet' or 'Far From The Madding Crowd'.

Your exactly right, I did find this album a bit disconcerting at first after the previous one. The band certainly were more purposeful in their approach to Salt and they aim for a particular sound but I find it lacks the ingenuity that was present on 'The Shadow Cabinet'. Some great songwriting no doubt but just not on par with Wuthering Heights' best. For me the bands sound was perfected on the previous album, this ones just a step back.

Advertise on Metal Storm


Login or register to post here.



Similar topics

Forum Topic Similarity Started
Albums Wuthering Heights - Salt 6 24.02.2010 by Irinel
Reviews Wuthering Heights - The Shadow Cabinet 5.5 19.11.2006 by GT
News Wuthering Heights - New Album Coming 4.5 02.07.2008 by Infurnace
Albums Wuthering Heights - Within 4.5 25.04.2010 by Uirapuru
Albums Wuthering Heights - Far From The Madding Crowd 4.5 20.12.2009 by GT



Hits total: 2615 | This month: 36