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Angra
Fireworks
May 1999
Released: 1999, Century Media
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: EvilG

Fans of progressive melodic metal will no doubt already be more than familiar with Angra. Since the release of their 1993 debut "Angel's Cry" this five-piece Brazilian act have come quite a long way. Many would say that they have usurped Sepultura's claim to fame as the most preeminent metal band from Brazil. I'm not sure that's the case, but regardless Angra are a clearly a metallic force to be reckoned with!



Highlights on the CD include the "Helloweenish" CD opener "Wings of Reality", "Metal Icarus" with it's great leads that would make Yngwie proud and "Mystery Machine" with some really great riffing on the intro! Overall, the main strength of this band lies in the lead guitar department. It's melodic, technical, fast and ripping! The dueling solos on "Extreme Dream" are a great example of some of the fine lead playing found throughout the CD. The song "Speed" (surprise surprise) gets off to a great start with of course fast guitar and drums but by the time the vocals come in it slows down again, now if they could only keep up that intensity for the full song!!



The pre-release press for this CD would have you believe that this was going to be something totally mind-blowing...Well don't believe everything you read. Sure I like this CD a lot but upon hearing the CD it was sort of anti-climatic. This is not as heavy as I had thought it would be and the mix on the CD to me is not the best. The guitars are not prominent enough nor very thick sounding, the vocals seem too loud as are (in places) the keyboards. I had thought this would knock my head off with pure power but instead it's a little too safe sounding. The track "Gentle Change" burned my ears (I cannot take sappy ballads no matter who plays them). However, with only one throwaway track on this otherwise great CD "Fireworks" makes an excellent addition to any metalheads collection.
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