The Moon and the Nightspirit - _Osforras_
(Equilibrium Music, 2009)
by: Quentin Kalis (7.5 out of 10)
Compared to The Moon and the Nightspirit's previous record _Rego Rejtem_, arguably one of the best pagan folk albums, _Osforras_ is a more elegant composition with a relatively refined production, more developed melodies and less overt medievalism. The rough edges have been filed down, not sawn off, and the album retains an earthy feel. They have retained their native Hungarian tongue, and Agnes Toth once again provides her distinctive fantastical artwork. (The expanded digibook edition is recommended purely on this basis -- my knowledge of art is on a par with that of hip-hop and I can't comment on its worth, but as an accompaniment to the music, it is without peer.)

I'm unsure to what extent this can be said to draw upon Hungarian folk traditions, and there is at least one melody line that sounds suspiciously Middle Eastern. Not that it really matters -- it's not as if they are claiming to be purists of any sort. _Osforras_ is not a bad album by any standard, yet I can't help but feel that compared to its predecessor, it is found wanting; I feel as if it has lost the playful sense of spontaneity that made _Rego Rejtem_ such a joy to listen to and this just feels a bit more calculated. Still glad to have it in my possession, but it just isn't the same.


(article published 3/9/2009)

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