Jan 07

Angra – Secret Garden (2015)

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After 4 years waiting, Brazilian power metal titans Angra returned with a new album and some new faces in their current line up. They released Secret Garden last year in Japan, and the album will be released this month in the rest of the world, This new album includes the début of Fabio Lione (Rhapsody Of Fire/Vision Divine) as their new vocalist, and is their first album with drummer Bruno Valverde. There is also a couple of special guests on the album that includes, Simone Simmons (Epica) singing a duet with Fabio Lione on the title track of the album, Secret Garden, and another duet with Doro Pesch on the song Crushing Room.

Secret Garden has a lot to offer in terms of diversity, and it reflects the maturity of Angra and how they had assimilated new sounds and styles. On this album they are continuing improving the quality of their trademark sound, but with Secret Garden they have decided to revamped it a little. With the voice of Fabio Lione on their side, there is nothing that could go wrong, to be honest, this album is amazing. Angra has always a good eye for powerful vocalists (Andre Matos & Edu Falaschi), this time around the voice of Angra is not the only thing that has changed, their style it seems it has been tempted by the sounds of modern progressive metal. Songs like Violet Sky, Upper Levels & Crushing Room had some of that approach, which makes Secret Garden a more diverse album. I think that the approach that Angra gives to this type of influences, specially Kiko‘s guitar work deserves be recognized on the way they are one of the few long-standing bands that had connected to the modernity metal in order to improve their own sound.

Fabio Lione in the other hand brings to the band great vocal elements that are alike with the music that Angra is capable to produce, that being said I believe that songs like Black Hearted Soul, Final Light, and Storm Of Emotions are the flag bearer songs of this record, not only these songs show how connected the music is with Fabio‘s voice, but how Fabio‘s vocals are connected with Angra‘s power metal style. Secret Garden not only shines as a great diverse album, but also its a perfect comeback to the metal scene for a band of the caliber of Angra.

The box of surprises continues with the title track of the album, Secret Garden is a song that delivers a duet between Fabio Lione and Simone Simmons of Epica, I got the chance to witness this two voices perform together at the Kamelot US tour a couple of years back (when Fabio was filling on vocals for Kamelot). But this song, Secret Garden has the same powerful awe feeling I got when I saw them perform together, a beautiful heart-filling song delivered by two talented voices. Crushing Room is a weird and interesting song, at first I couldn’t recognize Doro‘s voice as her tone sounds somehow different, perhaps because of all the up-tempo parts of the song her normal tone didn’t fit with the rest of the song, but it took me a while to figure out who it was. This song is just a collage of different musical & vocal styles which make it quite unique.

Secret Garden could be considered as the door for a new era on Angra‘s history, the music, the style, the voice, all have been revamped, and modernized. I think this album could be a great link not only between the band’s past and present, but also between the band’s music, and the modernity of progressive metal in general. If you are a fan of the band, and want to have your mind blown away for how awesome and diverse this album is, I highly recommend you get Angra‘s  new album, Secret Garden.

4 out of 5 Rating: ★★★★☆

Angra

Tracklist:

1. Newborn Me
2. Black Hearted Soul
3. Final Light
4. Storm of Emotions
5. Violet Sky
6. Secret Garden
7. Upper Levels
8. Crushing Room
9. Perfect Simmetry
10. Silent Call

Genre: Power/Progressive Metal

Record Label: EarMusic

Playing Time: 48 Minutes

Lineup:

Fabio Lione – Vocals
Rafael Bittencourt – Guitars
Kiko Loureiro – Guitars
Felipe Andreoli – Bass
Bruno Valverde – Drums
Simone Simons – Guest Vocals (“Secret Garden”)
Doro Pesch – Guest Vocals (“Crushing Room”)

Links:

http://www.angra.net
https://www.facebook.com/AngraOfficialPage
https://twitter.com/AngraOfficial
http://instagram.com/AngraOfficial
https://www.youtube.com/user/AngraChannel

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