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It seems that the old Angra has been erased. Neither the “reborn” Angra nor the new band from their former members, Shaman, will repeat the precious jewel that Fireworks was. But I’m not saying this album is bad, au contraire, it’s great, musical experimentation is over for Angra and they returned to the power metal trend in a way I didn’t expected after I knew about the split between the main composition forces of old Angra, Matos and guitarists Loureiro and Bittencourt. I still believe Fireworks is their best release, but Rebirth is a nice power metal album and the new members (more than half of the band) are showing how they can fill equally or maybe better the shoes of old members.
Maybe Edu Falaschi can’t sing as high as Matos, but I like more his style, with a more steady and aggressive voice and his musical contribution is the perfect match for the ideas of the guitarists. Aquiles Priester may not be as versatile as Ricardo Confessori, but he is an incredible drummer, suiting perfectly for the style Angra is handling now. And on the bass, Felipe Andreoli is a young man that I didn’t expected to be as great as Luis Mariutti. You may listen carefully to the bass lines on this album, they are not as recognizable as in the first releases of Angra (I mean, no solos), but as a bass player I just don’t know how can Andreoli play that lines. Kiko Loureiro and Rafael Bittencourt are the remains of old Angra, but renewed, no, wait… they returned to they roots, with a musical style that reminds me more the Angels Cry era. So this indicates that the old, old, old Angra is not totally erased.
Rebirth starts with In Excelsis, an intro that prepares you for the jaw-dropping Nova Era (just as Unfinished Allegro did with Carry On). With this song you can listen how Falaschi is one of the best vocalist in the newcomers’ top metal scene (I hadn’t heard of him before) and his versatility is confirmed with soft songs like the intro on Millennium Sun or Visions Prelude. Acid Rain, the powerful song that remains in your head for a while with their catchy chorus and impressive choral backlines. On the semi-soft side we have Heroes of Sand and the memorable Rebirth, where we can appreciate the work of Angra with acoustic guitars, which I didn’t notice until I heard this song. The arpeggio is so sweet and then electric guitars break in changing the tune but not the meaning of the song. Unholy Wars reminds me the Holy Land era, specially the song Carolina IV, because of its Latin percussions and chorus intro, and then becomes more power metal oriented, but it doesn’t matters, it kicks ass. Also the Latin feeling remains with the drum pattern in Judgement Day. One of the songs I like the best is Running Alone because of the choruses and the vocal duties that Falaschi shows on this song.
In fact, Angra is not the same, that disappointed me a little, but I think they’re doing a great job and that’s what counts, they still sound refreshing and this can assure us more Angra for a long time.