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Within Temptation


The Heart of Everything [Limited Edition]

Year: 2007
Format: CD
Label: GUN/SonyBMG
Genre: [Symphonic Metal]
Overall Rating: 9.0
Music: 9.0
Production: 8.5

Within Temptation takes both a step back and forward with their new release The Heart of Everything... in a way they're going back to their roots while still retaining the more commercial and accessible sound of The Silent Force... one of the best examples of this is the title track, which is among the highlights of this record. While WT's previous album only featured the mellifluous side of Sharon den Adel's voice, The Heart of Everything showcases also the more experimental side of Sharon (throat voice on the title track, gnarly whispers among others). In addition, the growls of Enter-era are back, although they're really minimalistic - for example, Our Solemn Hour features backing growls repeating "Sanctus Espiritus". Also guitar solos have found their way into some compositions, but otherwise the music is in the familiar vein of Within Temptation that we've grown to love.

The production on this record is top-notch. It's fairly remarkable how much details have been put into this record, and I noticed that listening to this album is more rewarding when one really concentrates on the music. When one only half-heartedly listens to this album on the background, a lot of details will be missed and this record could translate into being average with strong similarity between songs - although more involved listening reveals the depth of this album.

Quite surprisingly the album opener "The Howling" has been limited slightly lower compared to the other tracks in the mastering process making it softer... hence the second track, which is also the single, really kicks in and thus grabs the listener's attention. This kind of production technique is somewhat seldom used, at least to my knowledge, but seems to be working quite well on this record. On a side note, the single features Life of Agony's singer Keith Caputo at his peak.

Compared to basic release of this album, this limited edition features a rock mix of the single and comes in a nice digipack format. Both releases contain the exclusive Opendisc feature that allows the listener to create a link with the band. Among others it gives access to exclusive content such as messages from the band, audio, video and photo gallery along with a tour diary.

All in all, The Heart of Everything is definitely a positive surprise in my book, and I warmly recommend all fans of female-fronted metal bands to give it a listen. Unlike some groups, Within Temptation shows signs of progress, and with The Heart of Everything they've definitely found the right track.

Release date: July 24th, 2007 (USA & Canada), already released elsewhere

Visit Artist's Website

- MAGE (June 3rd, 2007)



den Adel, Sharon: Vocals
Westerholt, Robert: Guitars
Spierenburg, Martijn: Keyboards
van Haestregt, Stephen: Drums
van Veen, Jeroen: Bass
Jolie, Ruud: Mandolin, Acoustic and Electric Guitars, Backing Vocals

Caputo, Keith: Guest Vocals on Track 2
Pap, Jonas: Cello on Tracks 7, 9 & 11
Salisbury, Tom: Piano on Tracks 3, 9 & 11
de Jong, Siard: Fiddle on Tracks 6 & 11
Producer: Gibson, Daniel
Mixing by: Glaumann, Stefan & Mhren, Patrick
Mastering by: Unavailable
Within Temptation - The Heart of Everything [Limited Edition]  CD  Cover Image
01. The Howling
02. What Have You Done
03. Frozen
04. Our Solemn Hour
05. The Heart of Everything
06. Hand of Sorrow
07. The Cross
08. Final Destination
09. All I Need
10. The Truth Beneath the Rose
11. Forgiven
12. What Have You Done (Rock Mix)

Length: 61:03
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