|Review: Reina Negra - Aquelarre|
Label: Fighter Records
Year released: 2021
Genre: Heavy Metal
Review online: May 22, 2021
Reviewed by: MetalMike
Rated 2.5/5 (50%) (2 Votes)
Reina Negra is a Spanish band that was active for much of the '80s but never made it beyond a couple of demos before splitting up. Fighter Records has gathered the songs from their two demos plus a handful of live tracks and released the compilation, Aqeularre. A lot of bands existed in the '80s and followed a similar trajectory and with good reason; they simply weren't very good and that is the case with Reina Negra. They played an amped-up style of heavy metal that mixed some of the punky speed of Motörhead ("El Anticristo (Infierno en la Tierra") with guitars that sound like Fast Eddie Clarke might be playing them and melodic hard rock-tinged music in the vein of old Loudness ("Vencido"). It is obvious these guys were trying their damndest but nothing gelled and all the songs sound like a bunch of bashing with the occasional riff or vocal line that stands out. These are demos, so that has to be taken into consideration, but the songwriting never rises above the demo level and that goes a long way toward explaining why a record deal was never forthcoming. The live tracks are nearly unlistenable, with excessive muffled conversations between the singer and the audience and truly lousy sound. Once again, a struggling band, so I get the roughness, but why include them on Aquelarre at all? They sound terrible and I can't imagine that's not how Fighter Records wanted to represent this band and their material. I do have to admit the cover is pretty badass. As a moment in time, I guess this is sort of interesting, but beyond that I can't imagine who needs to own this.
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