Wolfgang Süssenbeck is no stranger to the Austrian metal scene. Bands like DARKSIDE and DEMOLITION were never big mega-sellers, but they were veterans of Austrian metal. Now the wolf is trying a new work with his project WOLFHEART FEAT. THE MALAVITA ANTISOCIAL CLUB. Not a very catchy name for a band, as I think. But the name already underlines the fact that “Morphean Empires” is not primarily about sales figures. Süssenbeck himself emphasized in an interview with Stormbringer that he wanted to make an album that he would like to hear himself. And this statement underscores the authenticity of the whole thing. Because “Morphean Empires” cannot easily be categorized. One or the other record company would recommend the band to be more easily squeezed into a category. After all, in this case it is particularly difficult to make it clear to the listener in just a few words which target group this work is intended to address. Fortunately, you are only subject to the constraints of business to a limited extent, because you are part of "Wolfblood", the label of - surprise - Wolfgang Süssenbeck.
To illustrate the versatility of the work, I have selected three "songs" that I would like to highlight:
"Song For Lara Ana": The violin and the piano open this song. The use of German vocals at the latest indicates a deviation from the norm. Somewhere between RAMMSTEIN ballads and melodic death, this exotic, at times somewhat weird song fits into place. Despite the special focus, this track is never embarrassing.
“Souls In The Void“: Heavy, gloomy, almost at home in Doom, the track eats its way into your ear canals. Partly with deep growls, the song picks up speed in the meantime and at that point in time it is exactly what one expects as an inclined friend of the dark music. The modern-sounding “Plutonian Democracy”, the “God Delusion” with a few twists and the gloomy “Unsung Heroes” with its choppy riffs hit a similar notch.
What should also be emphasized are the songs on the second disc, which are subsumed under the name "The Parthenopean Shores". In 27 minutes you are taken on a journey on which the special relationship between mastermind Wolfgang and his second home, Naples, is discussed. This journey takes you through completely different passages, which mostly sound less dark than the parts of the first CD. Songs like “Eruption” are lively and even cautiously optimistic, without taking their own roots ad absurdum.
It can be stated that “Morphean Empires” has become an extremely substantial work. No “higher, faster, further” records are broken here. There is also no top-heavy "music for musicians" presented. And yet you need a little patience to understand the Chose. But then music lovers without blinkers will get their money's worth, because the listening pleasure pays off. And if you had to describe what is presented in a few words, then I would throw the following slogans into the race: critical, gloomy, varied, thoughtful, authentic.
I deny all these characteristics to the current Austrian export hits in the music business. For me these are very, very strong 4 points. In this sense: Buy “Morphean Empires” and support music as it can and should be today.
Even if what is presented can hardly be put into a few words, “Morphean Empires” can still be described. Because what you hear here is not quantum physics, but honest metal. Often progressive in the true sense of the word, you don't shine with top-heavy structures, but with a song-serving approach. Because even if you get to hear Melodic Death Metal in the broadest sense, clearly structured songs rule here, which prove that refrains can also get their chance in Death Metal. But wait, take a step back: is it still death metal if you include violins, pianos, plain chants and even Italian folk? Süssenbeck won't care how the music is categorized. And any potential listener to whom this also seems irrelevant should not stop reading now.