Distributor/label: Prophecy Productions/Auerbach Tonträger
Buy Album [URL]: http://en.prophecy.de/the-moon-and-the-nightspirit-holdrejtek.html
3. Magban alvó
5. Mikrokozmosz pt 1
7. Mikrokozmosz pt 2
Gábor Végh (live member)
Gergely Cseh (live member)
The concept of blending traditional folk with more contemporary music isn’t new, so to find a group that have a truly original take on the mix is rare indeed. One such band are The Moon And The Nightspirit, the brainchild of Agnes Toth and Mihaly Szabo who together with live musicians Gabor Vegh and Gergely Cseh produce an almost spiritual feel to their music. The Hungarian act have forged a very respectable following, mostly in Europe but with fans scattered across the globe.
Holdrejtek; their fifth album continues along the same lines as previous works although here the level of complexity is much higher. Coming across a bit like, Oh Land’s mysterious country cousin the integration of instruments such as violin and lute into each song is seamless. Throw in Toth’s haunting vocal and the result is a thing of true beauty.
The tempo is kept just high enough to escape criticism of being ponderous while on ‘Tavaszhozo’ the harmonics take on a life of their own. If you’ve ever heard The Medaeval Baebes then this is comparable in terms of quality.
It’s pretty amazing to hear music that actually places your mind in its origins. The tone of that violin, the touch on the keys and the dark edges to the arrangement are all unmistakably eastern European in flavour. It makes for a rich, well seasoned listen that only occasionally slips from near perfection. The odd bridge not flowing, on ‘Egnyito’ being the most obvious, and production sharpness getting lost here and there when the more exotic instruments are brought to bear.
You have to hand it to the Magyars though, as a piece of pagan folk this is an album that others will be judged by. Admittedly its subtle build make it one for connoisseurs or those that like to persevere but the rewards for really listening are there for the taking.
‘Holdrejtek’ is a fine album for those quiet moments in your life when you need something to take you away from the digital world we now live in. The Moon And The Nightspirit have managed to fit a comfy sofa, a good book and a glass of red into music form. Quite an achievement!
Review by Gary Trueman