The Spaniards of MÄGO DE OZ never had taken overtly long to release a new album, but still with “Belfast” we have a fill-in between their last master piece “Gaia” and the hopefully soon to follow next full album. The energetic band from the Iberian Peninsula never had been a small band, but now they grew to nine members, if they continue like that, they soon can compete with HAGGARD…
Anyways. “Belfast“ continues from cover versions, one Metal version of an MDO song, two “orchestral“ versions of own songs and an intro and here, too, you notice that they are not all that dead serious about it, I mean, if you do a BONEY M. cover… Let’s take a methodic approach. The Metal version of “La Rosa De Los Vientos” of course sounds a lot like MÄGO DE OZ, just the charm of the original ballad gets lost a bit, while the orchestral versions of “Alma“ and “Hasta Que Tu Muerte Nos Separe“ just have a few more strings more, but apart from that stay quite close to the original.
So on to the cover versions, which should be a bit more interesting. There we go: “Belfast“ by BONEY M., the first English language of MÄGO DE OZ of all times. Sounds a bit unusual, is super simple and super catchy, the electric guitars fit very well and when they venture into double-bass regions, the song is real fun! “Dame Tu Amor” (in the original “Guilty Of Love” by WHITESNAKE) and RATA BLANCA’s “Mujer Amante” are well done, transferred into the MDO sound, but nothing outstanding.
“Dama Negra“ originally is “Lady In Black“ by URIAH HEEP, close to the original, sounds as if two different vocalists were on this one, good version. Then we have two more cover versions, which have been met a bit more controversely, “Can’t Help Falling In Love“ by Elvis Presley (“Todo Irá Bien“), and “Somewhere Over The Rainbow“ from the "Wizard Of Oz“, at times differing quite a bit from the original, but still sounding very good to my ears.
As usual it will depend on, how much of a fan you are, I like it, but one big factor will be the price for the release, if you actually want to buy this one or not… (Online March 8, 2005)