This year the French label Music Records has re-released for the third time the album “The Man of the Three Islands” from young French band MoSKowa. Originally it was released three years ago, and then re-released in 2019, and now it is presented with a remastered sound and new cover art. Nowadays the musicians are well on their way to composing new songs for the upcoming album, so for those who have missed an opportunity to discover these French metalheads three years ago, now is the chance to enjoy this low-key doom/death metal.
MoSKowa has chosen for their lyrics the great history of France, so their options to play with this topic are really vast, because France can be proud of rich and luxuriant history. But musically everything is quite reserved and primitive, and though stylistically their music is closer to death metal, their dreary and bleak slow-downs make them also fond of doom metal. And at times the influence of stoner rock and grunge emerges with a typical southern sounding (like in the songs “Russia’s Eyes”, “Battle in the Cold” and “The Legacy”). “The Legacy” also has the death/thrash core, but “Look Back” has some black metal vibes, and the most doomish composition is “Russia’s Eyes”, though the doom/death elements turn up from time to time in various spots during this album. The melodic parts on this record can be found rather occasionally without integral spirit throughout the songs, so the lack of melodies and harmonies gives the appearance of a scattered versatility, like it’s only a compilation of various songs.
The primitive naked guitar riffs are very common on “The Man of the Three Islands”, and due to their monotonous drabness, the songs sound a bit vacant. But the guitar solos eventually diversify these mundane chords with the classical scales (“Eye Blood of Defeat” and “Look Back”). The singer Kylroys prefers a low and muted growling technique, and that’s exactly right for this type of music, although sometimes his voice sounds far too calm and reticent (only the track “A Morbid Frotzy Return” is entirely instrumental). Generally this album emanates a positive aura, but it lacks confident and shiny moments to single out particular compositions.
The main problem of MoSKowa is probably in confused ambiguity, they didn’t decide to which stylistic conception to cling to. Their doom metal is obviously too gentle and boring, and their death metal is too reserved and detached, but the weak melodic parts make the music difficult for perception. Only the southern vibes give the impression of sharp audacity. But this is the third reissue of “The Man of the Three Islands”, so the music of MoSKowa is in demand on the heavy metal market.
Release date: December 2nd, 2020
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