Lyon, France’s Meurtrières has not strayed far from their original goal of writing old-school, epic heavy metal with medieval overtones on their newest effort, “Ronde De Nuit” to be released on August 25.
If anything, the band (consisting of new vocalist Fiona, the guitar tandem of Flo Spector and Olivier, bassist Xavier and drummer Thomas) has taken what they started on their well-received 2020 self-titled EP and added new layers of complexity and depth. It is the natural transition for a band gaining more confidence in its songwriting abilities.
Meurtrières wasted little time introducing new vocalist Fiona — the band started playing live shows and writing new material with her right after the release of the EP, thus, giving Meurtrières ample time to hone its new material. And Fiona fits the band’s hard-charging, gallant music like a glove, coming away with a stronghold of fiery, epic choruses — all sung in the Meurtrières’ native tongue.
The lyrical subject matter on Ronde De Nuit still spans the medieval domain but with increased emphasis on paintings by Rembrandt (The Night Watch) and Johann Heinrich (Füssli). The band aimed to make the songs “pictorial,” reflecting imaginary portraits to draw in the listener. Except for “Aucun Homme, Aucun Dogme, Aucune Croix” (which is a known French medieval legend about a real woman), the songs on Ronde De Nuit are based on fantasy with a desired fate: All the depicted characters are doomed to tragedy, for in the world of Meurtrières, there is no such thing as crowned kings and queens and even glorious warriors.
Artwork by Ivan Brun rounds out a package that perfectly ties in thematically with the desperate and dark themes of the lyrics. It is a fitting component to an album laced with stunning visuals and epic, old-school metal of the highest order!