Released: 2011, Metalodic
In the summer I came across an album called HYPERBOREA, by a band called Vorpal Nomad, which is just fantastic. I reviewed it in September I noticed the album was released was on the up and coming Canadian label, Metalodic Records, which I knew had been around for a couple of years but I had not given the label the attention they deserved. Impressed by the quality of the Vorpal Nomad, I went to the Metalodic company web-site and basically bought their entire catalogue of eight albums by a roster of seven bands, at a hell of a good price I may add! So now, I’ve decided to review all those releases (minus the Vorpal Nomad of course) in a feature on Metalodic Records to support the label and it’s high-quality, international roster. The bands in the spotlight are Aclla, (Brazil), Caravellus (Brazil), Icewind (Canada), Instanzia (Canada), Kaktus Project (France) and two albums by Kerion (France). Please check out the reviews of these bands in this Metalodic Records feature.
Aclla is a relatively new band from Brazil. They independently released their debut album LANDSCAPE REVOLUTION in 2010. Metalodic picked it up in 2011 and reissued it with two bonus tracks and slightly altered cover art. (MLC 005). This is my least favourite band of the Metalodic roster so far. That is not to suggest they are of poor quality, far from it, but in any pile of albums and their ones you gravitate towards (or away from). Aclla starts with an odd name that doesn’t seem very Metal. However a quick search on the internet tells me that Aclla are the virgin guardians of the flame in the ancient Inca empire. Ok, that’s sort of Metal. Having a picture of a fossilized fish isn’t really all that cool either but if you look closely there is a surprise in the artwork, that I didn’t notice the first several times I looked. The booklet looks good with a design that kind of reminds of something that Hugh Syme would do.
The 14 track album (with the two bonus tracks) now tops just over an hour, with most of the songs running in the 4-5 minute range with the exception the title track which is a 0:29 second long instrumental of what sounds like some sort of digital feedback and a didgeridoo. It’s odd but it leads into one of the strongest tracks on the album ‘Flight Of The Seventh Moon’, a fierce double kick fueled number. The quartet fuse some indigenous Brazilian rhythms into the speedy brand of Power Metal. The combination of ethnic music and Metal are not as overt as Sepultura for example (Thank God) but there is certainly a stylistic flair to the songs. The lyrics also have a bit of a regional flavour on tracks like ‘Jaguar’ and ‘Sun ‘N Moon’ and there is a bit of an environmental slant to the lyrics as well.
Although there are some fine individual performances, good production and interesting sounds the band haven’t quite developed am unique songwriting style quite yet. The Metal is fairly straightforward and the few sonic extras, acoustic guitar for example save it from being a slightly dull album to a bit above average. The vocals of Tato Deluca are strong and distinct and the drumming of Eloy Casagrande, especially his heavy use of the bell of the ride, also caught my ear. With thousands of albums being released every year, this is a good debut with potential.