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jueves, 17 de diciembre de 2015

Allos - Spiritual Battle (2012)

Les aclaroq ue hoy será un día bastante metalero, así que empezamos con ésta resubida de Sandy: power metal sinfónico brazuca cantado en inglés para quien guste.

Artista: Allos
Álbum: Spiritual Battle
Año: 2012
Género: Power metal sinfónico
Nacionalidad: Brasil

Lista de Temas:
01. Unknown World
02. Mirror of Deep Waters
03. Power of Choice
04. Journey
05. Everlasting Love
06. The Hero
07. My Spirit
08. Eterno Presente
09. The Call of Time
10. Spiritual Battle

- Celso Alves / Vocals
- Júnior Oliveira / Guitars
- Edley Winderson / Bass
- Wilmer Richard / Keyboard
- Wallace Ryan / Drums

Allos es una banda brasilera de power metal progresivo cristiano que ha debutado con el álbum "Spiritual Battle". Ya saben que el estilo no me gusta, pero tampoco vamos a privar a los cabezones amigos de escuchar de estas bandas. Doble bombo siempre molesto y presente, melodias pomposas, muchos solos alternando entre guitarras y teclados, mucho riff machacante, voz impostada a lo Angra, influencias da música clásica, obviamente un sonido muy Symphony X.

Brasilian metalband ALLOS gives us their strong debut album within the power metal/prog genre in the veins of Theocracy and their fellow Brasilians Eterna and Angra. Strong Christian English lyrics with female vocals here and there and a solid production! This could easiely be the newcomers of the year.

Las letras de las canciones están armadas sobre la base de los textos bíblicos, algunos toques simil Malmsteen, y ese sonido que lo que menos parece es brasilero, salvo en una canción que cantan en portugués y es la única muestra de la originalidad. Sobre eso (el sonido de los grupos latinoamericanos) tengo una teoría basada en la música cercana al progresivo de los distintos países, tomando a Argentina, Brasil, Chile y México como ejemplos. Vamos a ver cuando me hago un tiempito para publicarlo.

Allos is a new band from Brazil who released their first album in 2012. They started in 2003 and last year their debut album “Spiritual Battle” was released.
The name Allos means Other and revers to The Holy Spirit. That’s a nice name to have as a band. But also a promising. Let’s check it out.
The albums contains 10 songs with a total playing time of 42 minutes, not bad for a debut album.
The kickoff of the album is “Unknown world” and is an instrumental into and flows very nice over into “Mirror of the Deep waters”, which gives us the full range of power metal at their disposal. This sounds good. Vocals are good, very good actually. Also guitars, bass, drums and keys are very well performed. It’s a nice start to the album, guitar solos followed by key solos and so on. These guys know how to play. “Power of Choice” is strong on the vocals. They remind me on Blind Guardian. “Journey” start calm and quiet, like a ballad, but after a minute the power is released through great guitar solos, fast drums supported by great keys and bass. This is Power Metal as is should be. The female vocals in this song are great and surprising. “Everlasting Love” start with the female vocals in a very nice way, later to altered with the male vocals. This is a very nice lingering song, that builds up great.
“The Hero” stats very fast and continues in that fast paste. Excellent done! “My Spirit” and “Eterna Presente” are two semi-ballad songs . Starting with calm vocals, but after a few minutes more power kicks in. Nicely altered with female vocals. “The Call of Battle” is an instrumental intro leading to the last song of the album “Spiritual Battle” and yesssss, this is fast! And Good! Really good. Great guitar solos with fast bass, this is seriously good!
To conclude this album: Allos is a band to take serious. These guys know how to play and make some very good power metal. My recommendation is that these guys find a label who can seriously support them with the next recording and. And I wouldn’t be surprised that one day they play alongside bands like Theocracy.

If ever there was a non-European country that exemplified a national style of power metal, it would almost certainly be Brazil. Ever since Angra shaped the mould with Angel’s Cry in 1993 and perfected the cast with 2000’s Rebirth, numerous Brazilian power metal bands (including Angra themselves) have followed the formula to a greater or lesser extent. Fast forward 19 years, and the influence is plain as day on Belo Horizonte, Brazil’s Allos and their debut album Spiritual Battle.
Now, a lazier soul than I would simply wave off this album as a “poor Angra clone”, but that’s not really being fair to either of them. The comparison makes for a decent starting point, however, and we’ll go from there. Unlike Angra, Allos drops any overt hints of indigenous South American instrumentation and sounds, and also foregoes the same level of technicality that Loureiro and Bittencourt routinely achieve.
Allos takes a rather straightforward, Christian approach to their lyricism. However, while the words are a bit awkward coming out of Celso Alves’ mouth, they’re not representative of the clumsy approach employed by some Christian bands. Alves himself is a decent singer, and it is painfully obvious that Edu Falaschi has had a strong influence upon the young vocalist. The occasionally forced strain in his voice is one that seems to find its way to a number of Brazilian vocalists, certainly. While Alves is all right, he doesn’t boast an exceptional range, particular energy, or an extraordinary level of charisma.
Despite the glossy layers of keyboards, the occasionally hyperactive bass (definitely a plus), and the fire-spitting guitar solos (see “Power Of Choice”), the rhythm guitar is terribly simplistic at times, and makes for a tremendously basic foundation that Allos never quite grows beyond for the duration of the album. Also, as this is quite purely a power metal album, I find the lack of properly stirring choruses to be a measurable disappointment, with the soft “Everlasting Love” lacking any sort of true melodic hook to redeem itself. This ballad is certainly the least remarkable tune on the album, while I’d class “The Hero” and the self-titled closer as the strongest, with their speed, tasteful keyboard backdrop, and superior guitar and vocal melodies.
Fans of Age Of Artemis and Angra’s own power metal glory days will appreciate Spiritual Battle to varying extents. I myself find the album lacking the sheer memorability of the former, and the effortless, graceful complexity of the latter. However, I’d say that Allos is a band to watch. If they progress beyond their highly formulaic infancy, there is clear talent from every corner that the quintet could capitalize upon with ease.
Daniel Millard

Here’s a what if for you: Let’s say you take a foundation of epic and symphonic power metal and fuse it with some neo-classical, progressive and speed metal overtones- sort of like the best aspects of Theocracy, Narnia, Golden Resurrection and HB rolled into one. Would anyone step up to that counter?
No doubt this reviewer would be the first to volunteer! Those who also happen to be fans of the previously referenced bands - and corresponding styles therein - would do themselves a favor by checking out Spiritual Battle, the independently released 2012 full length debut from Belo Horizonte, Brazil based Allos. The group proves one of the few “diamonds” in what has been at times a “rough” Brazilian Christian metal scene, but to their credit they manage to sidestep many of the pitfalls plaguing the region in terms of shaky production, even shakier vocals and at times mixed songwriting.
One of the standout qualities to Spiritual Battle is its consistency in that it presents with no skip buttons or filler tracks. Rather, you will encounter eight full length pieces and two short instrumentals in which Allos artfully traverses power and progressive metal territory but some variety thrown in.
If interested in a classy power metal sound then look no further than “Mirror Of Deep Waters” (standing out with its symphonic elements) and “Power Of Choice” (characterized by its epic penchant). These two cannot help but bring to mind Theocracy.
“Journey” reflects some Narnia-like progressiveness (without coming across contrived in the process) while “The Hero” and “Spiritual Battle” are speed metal laced barn burners standing out with catchy chorus hooks and neo-classical leanings (sort of like the faster Golden Resurrection material).
Allos can also slow the tempo on the more semi-ballad feel of “Everlasting Love” and “My Spirit”. HB deserves mention, and not just for the use of keyboards and classical instrumentation, but also due to the former featuring some soprano (almost operatic) female vocals that hint of Johanna Aaltonen. The latter, in contrast, highlight rich baritone backing vocals.
The lone constructive comment is that Spiritual Battle is a bit ballad heavy (3 out of the 8 full length pieces are semi-ballads when factoring that there is also a Portuguese version of “Everlasting Love” entitled “Eterno Presente”). Perhaps the group could have given us another power/progressive metal number instead and relegated “Eterno Presente” to bonus track status.
It also must be noted how Spiritual Battle takes a bit of time in order to grow on you: nine to ten listens being my experience. Not that there is reason to fault this, but the fact is with “The Hero” and “Spiritual Battle” being the lone exceptions, the material here does not bring immediately recognizable melodies that might pull you in at once. In no way does this mean the songs here are any less laudable (the quality being that each track is able to stand part from the rest), but rather that a bit of patience is due.
Vocalist Celso Alves represents one of the standout qualities to Allos. The guy, to put it bluntly, is a top of the line talent and not just from the standpoint of the Brazilian metal scene but the metal scene overall regardless of classification or genre. Some have compared him to Edu Falaschi (Angra) - and rightly so! - but I hear some Lance King elements in his delivery as well in that he can go for a high note with ease but can also touch upon some lower register grit. Either way, we have an exciting new vocal talents whom I see being a force to be reckoned with for years to come.
Musicianship, as a matter of fact, is an overall strength. I particularly enjoy the symphonic qualities to keyboardist Wilmer Richard (who also knows when to add some well timed piano), but it is guitarist Junior Oliveira that stands out. At this point it must be noted how Allos displays a deft instrumental touch in which the two display their abilities, such as on “Mirror Of Deep Waters” with its lead guitar and keyboard duel. The albums title track and “Power Of Choice” feature some ripping soloing as well. Helping to round out the Allos sound are the previously referenced soprano female vocals of Fernanda Ohara, who appears on several tracks.
Allos has gotten off to quite the laudable start on Spiritual Battle, a worthwhile debut characterized by strengths in the areas of lead vocals, production and songwriting. If anything, I cannot help but get excited for the future of this group when factoring in the talent at hand. I am looking forward to hearing more from Allos!
Track By Track
“Mirror Of Deep Waters” represents a good indicator of the Allos sound, with its joining of orchestral elements, symphonic keyboards and turbulent guitars. Chorus is succinct but euphoniously done while a pointed lead guitar and keyboard duel carry the instrumental moments. I am somewhat reminded of Theocracy here.
“Power Of Choice” moves at the more forthright tempo. You will find some variances here, including some over-the-top epic leanings joined with neo-classical overtures (particularly for the extended instrumental interlude) baritone backing vocals (that help lend an operatic feel) and a double bass driven chorus (which adds to the swiftly moving scene). Again, Theocracy fans will delight. Lyric snippet:
The wind blows in many directions
We can’t let ourselves be carried away
We’ve the power of choice in our hands
In the sword is the fate of the soul
Guardians of heaven and Earth
Awake us from the illusion
Lord, come to vanish the darkness
The light of truth will guide us
“Journey” takes a progressive heading. The song starts instrumentally to a calm melding of acoustic guitars and classical instrumentation. After a minute, however, staunch guitars kick in and turn the song into a full born rocker in which some of the albums heavier moments occur. The only let up in tempo is the presence of occasional soprano female vocals.
A semi-ballad approach is taken on “Everlasting Love”. Ethereal and majestic, the song starts to more female vocals with piano and voila decorating the backdrop. When Alves takes over on vocals, impetus picks up as things slowly drift forward until a flowing chorus interwoven with an intent rhythm guitar is obtained. HB cannot help but come to mind. Lyric snippet:
Everlasting love involves my being
In Your horizon I will rest
Lead my walking to the restful waters
Live in my heart
Softly the breeze comes and touches my soul
I breathe the airs of a dream
In the wings of the Most High, my shelter
The endless daybreak shines in my eyes
An unrelenting tempo can be found on “The Hero”. This one almost approaches speed metal territory with its powering double bass and spirited riffing but can also gives rise to some neo-classical touches. Chorus proves quite catchy with its accessible hook driven components. Golden Resurrection is the first name that comes to mind.
“My Spirit” hints of “Everlasting Love” with its semi-ballad feel. The song opens its first two minutes to a still combination of acoustic guitars and classical instrumentation. At just the moment you think the entire length of “My Spirit” to be mellow, momentum abruptly picks up to staunch guitars and baritone backing vocals to set heavier tone, albeit with periodic calmer moments in which keyboards and orchestration appears. Lyric snippet:
I am the tree of Life
Harvest the fruit of my Spirit and get the eternal life
When He looks at you, my Father will see us like one
And because I live you shall also live
A servant is not great than his lord
If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you
In the world you will have tribulations
But I’ve overcome the world
Things close to the albums satisfying speed metal laced title track. Similar to “The Hero” this one brings big hooks galore and the same unrelenting tempo that makes the faster material from Golden Resurrection so special. Adding to the mercurial scene are more classically done keyboards and a stretch of fitting fast fingered lead guitar. Topping things off is a piano driven passage at the halfway point that brings to mind Kerry Livgren’s “Ground Zero” (off his 1980 solo release Seeds Of Change). Lyric snippet:
Soldiers of the Almighty Lord
We’ll see the sunrise and the glory of God
Do the best under the Lord’s command that’s above death and life
Spiritual Battle! Don’t be afraid and fight!
Spiritual Battle! The victory is coming for you!
Perseverance and faith overflow the soul
They fortify the spirit
Andrew Rockwell

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Bueno, el disco es todo lo que se puede esperar de él. Ya saben a que suena, que les ofrece y no esperen sorpresas, aunque lo que hacen lo hacen bien, no lo podemos negar.

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Este espacio se reserva el derecho de publicar sobre cualquier tema que parezca interesante a su staff, no solamente referidos a la cuestión musical sino también a lo político y social.
Si no estás de acuerdo con lo expresado podrás dejar tu comentario siempre que no sea ofensivo, discriminador o violento...

Y no te confundas, no nos interesa la piratería, lo nuestro es simplemente desobediencia civil y resistencia cultural a favor del libre acceso al conocimiento (nuestra música es, entre otras tantas cosas, conocimiento).