The progressive/power metal pride of Brazil, Angra, is back with a new record called “Secret Garden“. This one is really special for including Fabio Lione of Rhapsody as the lead vocalist.

“Secret Garden” kicks in with the burning fire intro of “Newborn Me” in a groovy style with the symphonic background Angra got us used to with a really good chorus. Right from the start we witness how much the vocals of Fabio fit the bands’ music. Choir chants bring us “Black Heart Soul“, a Euro-power track with great chorus.

Dream-Theater-esque riffage leads us to “Final Light” which is a melancholic track with progressive outbursts, where Fabio shows his vocal range from the aggressive intro to the melancholic chorus. “Storm Of Emotions” (albums’ first video) starts with a bass intro, it’s the first ballad of the album, being somewhat bluesy in the verses. On “Violet Sky”, we are being surprised by the stoner-like intro riffage, as we head to a acoustic verse building up to a powerful chorus. The title track is the second ballad, and it has a surprise: Ms. Simone Simmons (Epica) enchanting the listener with her angel-like voice. Perfect.

In “Upper Levels”, after the Dream-Theater-esque intro, Fabio kicks in with great groovy verse/chorus (using a choir), then into some insane soloing. The headbanging riffage of “Crushing Rooms” is being followed by a haunted keyboard melody, setting the tone for the rest of the song. A more traditional power metal track called “Perfect Symmetry” with a amazing chorus, as well as a tripping symphonic/prog passage. And finally, the acoustic ballad “Silent Call” comes along with the ever-present choir to perfectly end the record.

Angra managed, despite the fact that they didn’t have any of their original frontmen, to pull out a diverse and beautiful progressive/power metal record.

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