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CD REVIEW: ANGRA – Secret Garden


Label: earMUSIC

Release Date: May 12, 2015

Rating: 8.5/10

Reviewed by: Todd “Toddstar” Jolicoeur

Brazilian heavy metal is alive and well, thanks to the latest disc from Angra.  Opener “Newborn Me” has heavy tones and a groove that brings a modern sound to the disc and the bands legacy.  Fabio Lione’s vocals are killer on this track and build through the verses and chorus.  “Black Hearted Soul” opens like a heavier symphonic track, but quickly shifts gears and focuses on the guitar work of Kiko Loureiro and the frantically paced drumming of Bruno Valverde.  “Storm Of Emotions” is a mellower track, in that the tempo and intensity are dialed down in the opening, but the emotion of the lyrics are evident in the vocals.  “Violet Sky” dials the intensity back up and comes across with a heavy bass line lightly accentuated by guitars, drums and keyboards.  Once the verse hits, the vibe relaxes… momentarily… until the chorus and bridge bring a heavy feel back.  “Upper Levels” features more tribal rhythms and a cool groove that has a wildly different jazz/prog/fusion sound woven into the vibe of the track giving this song and disc a depth not yet realized among the other tracks.  Disc closer “Silent Call” is a moody track that is vocal and piano driven, but it blends well within the framework of the disc and shows a different side of the band.

“Final Light” brings a cool tribal and rhythmic feel to the disc thanks to a great bottom end, courtesy of Felipe Andreoli and drummer Valverde.  The vocals mix well with the guitars and keyboards, filling out the verse and chorus nicely.  A unique cover of  The Police’s track “Synchronicity II” is a very welcome addition to the track, as it features a cool duet between Fabio and Rafael Bittencourt.  The track is heavy, yet retains a lot of the original arrangement, demonstrating the power of a well written song.  Title track “Silent Garden” opens with the beautiful vocals of Epica’s Simone Simons.  The lighter and airier voice rests well against the musical accompaniment and gives the disc a lighter touch without losing its power.  “Crushing Room” brings the vocals to the forefront of a killer track.  The way Bittencourt’s lead tangles with the voice of metal legend Doro Pesch gives the chorus a hauntingly beautiful edge that won’t soon be forgotten.  Throw in Loureiro’s solo and this is easily one of the better tracks on the disc.  “Perfect Symmetry” dials the tempo and guitar intensity back up to 10… or higher.  The vocals jump out on the verse and there is no looking back at this point.  The song perfectly captures the way this band plays together.

Tracklist: Newborn Me – Black Hearted Soul – Final Light – Storm Of Emotions – Synchronicity II – Violet Sky – Secret Garden – Upper Levels – Crushing Room – Perfect Symmetry – Silent Call





Category: CD Reviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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