ANGRA
"Temple of Shadows"

(SPV)

01. Deus le Volt!
02. Spread Your Fire
03. Angel and Demons
04. Waiting Silence
05. Wishing Well
06. Temple of Hate
07. Shadow Hunter
08. No Pain for the Dead
09. Winds of Destination
10. Sprouts of Time
11. Morning Star
12. Late Redemption

RATING: 8.5/10

ANGRA's 2001 release, "Rebirth", proved beyond any doubt that the departure of singer Andre Matos (who, along with ANGRA's rhythm section, left the group to form SHAMAN) would be less difficult to overcome than initially expected. Matos' replacement, Eduardo Falaschi (ex-SYMBOLS), bore little musical resemblance to his predecessor without completely betraying the essence of the band's sound, which only became darker and more aggressive following Andre's exit. Although ANGRA's songwriting style is still derived almost directly from the neo-classical metal approach pioneered by HELLOWEEN on their "Keeper of the Seven Keys Pt. I" CD, the band have become more confident and self-assured in their delivery, with the excellent production of Dennis Ward ensuring that the group's top-notch musicianship and progressive overtones don't get in the way of the band's ability to write catchy power metal tunes that stick in your head after only a couple of listens. Guest appearances by Kai Hansen (GAMMA RAY, ex-HELLOWEEN) and Hansi Kursch (BLIND GUARDIAN) don't add as much to the proceedings as they validate ANGRA's knack for executing this kind of stuff better and more consistently than just about anybody else out there right now. Far more musically advanced and modern-sounding than the likes of HAMMERFALL and PRIMAL FEAR (both of whom are seemingly content with regurgitating '80s ideas without adding little of their own), ANGRA come across as mature, intelligent and ready to rule the power metal world.

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