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Cruadalach - Raised by Wolves

Raised by Wolves
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 18 September 2018, 3:30 AM

CRUADALACH is a Folk/Melodic Groove Metal band formed in the Czech Republic in 2008. Following a Demo and EP release in 2010 and 2011 respectively, the band unveiled their debut full-length in 2011, titled “Lead – Not Follow.” “Raised by Wolves” is their third full-length album for review here, and contains ten new tracks. A testimony from the Facebook page reads, “Success is never final and failure never fatal. It's courage that counts.”

“Walking the Courage” is an instrumental that opens with a solitary nykelharpa playing a solemn passage, soon joined by other instruments and a line of harmony. It leads to “Eyes Wide Open,” which opens with a hearty rhythm, with Death vocals, and some real energy. The main melody line is carried by a recorder, and some clean vocals in the chorus. A crescendo starts to build in the bridge section, leading to a dynamic conclusion. “Relationshit” is an angry piece, reflected in both the vocals and the music. The vocals are short bursts of rage, tempered with clean vocals in the chorus, and it ends with the emphatic word “bitch.” The title track, “Raised by Wolves,” opens softly with violin and drums, leading to a full-on attack and the angry assault of the Death Vocals amidst the running strings and flute. There is a firey intensity is this song that is unmatched.

“Homesick” is a more somber affair, with some great clean vocals in the chorus. It could be the most accessible song on the album and would make for a great single, in my opinion. The clean vocals really reflect heavy emotions here and this song will stick with you for a while for sure. The Death Vocals are deep and angry in “Godwall Chant.” The rhythm chugs along while the combination of clean and Death vocals rolls with a thick and meaty chorus. A mysterious bridge passage then bubbles under the surface leading to a lead guitar sequence, and closing clean vocals. “Gambit with Gaia” opens with raging Death Vocals that are accompanied with strings, and a bouncy rhythm. The vocals are seriously harsh however, drowning out all other emotions trying to gain a foot hold in the track.

“For is All” is a heart track where the clean and harsh vocals sound off at the same time, creating an interesting and lively dichotomy. The harsher passages are full of rage while the cleaner passages breathe with life and with haste. “The Farewell too Soon” is a closing instrumental passage, with plenty of emotions and feelings, like something that you heart longs for but is unable to attain. Alluring strings play legato notes under staccato guitar notes that build a harmony as the world says good-bye. All in all, this is an excellent album, filled with the presence of the various instruments that are listed in the line-up. The band does a great job using each instrument to its full capacity, but not in an overbearing way. The Death and clean vocals do a nice job of trading off so that one doesn’t overtake the other. Open the halls of Valhalla and make a place for CRUADALACH!

Songwriting: 8
Originality: 9
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. Waking the Courage
2. Eyes Wide Open
3. Relationshit
4. Raised by Wolves
5. Homesick
6. Godwall Chant
7. Gambit with Gala
8. Brave New Dawn
9. For us all
10. The Farewell too soon
Petr Caisl – Vocals, Screams, Lyrics
Eliska Kasprzyk – Vocals, Violin, Nykelharpa
Jan Kapic – Guitars, Bouzouki, Backing Vocals
Jan Knote – Guitars, Backing Vocals
Ondrej Novak – Bass, Backing Vocals
Hana Slanaorva – Violin
Petra Jadrna – Fipple Flutes, Shawms, Traverso
Tom Kasprzyk – Drums
Record Label: 7Hard Records


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Edited 28 November 2022

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