Released: 2007, AFM Records
It is extremely rare for a lead singer to release a solo album that exceeds the quality of his or her respective main band; however, this is exactly what Edu Falaschi has accomplished with the release of ALMAH. Since 2001, Edu has been the lead singer of Brazilian power metallers, Angra. During his tenure, they have released an increasingly disappointing trio of albums (not counting EPs, live albums, etc.). From REBIRTH to TEMPLE OF SHADOWS to the latest, AURORA CONSURGENS, Angra has revealed itself to be a band losing inspiration and imagination, issuing mediocre albums far beneath their promising beginnings.
ALMAH, however, reveals Edu to be an ingenious songwriter. Not straying very far from the Angra camp, the compositions that make up the album tend to contain some of the South American percussive vibes found on Angra records, but also a variety of other styles compiled into tight, compact structures. Above all, the songs feature less futile double-bassing and speed in order to focus more on captivating the listener with melody and hooks. Fear not, though as there is a good mix of heavy songs along with slower more even tempered songs and ballads as well. Overall, the songs tend to lean towards the shorter side, with most compositions falling in the three to four minute range. Long-time Angra fans will hear much of their beloved band in this record, and most will wonder why songs like these have been absent from the recent Angra output.
The album opens with the a classic metal riff accompanied by a stomping, insistent drum beat for the straight ahead metal gem, “King.” This song features a very memorable chorus, and you will likely be banging your head and singing along during your first listen. “Scary Zone” is a song that opens with classic Brazilian percussion, before moving into very melodic, bass heavy, and keyboard laden verses, all leading to the most infectious chorus of the entire album. “Children of Lies” dumfounds expectations by starting with a fast synth, making you think you are about to jump into a speedy number, that then slows down into a building minute and a half of keyboards and plodding riffing, before jumping into another upbeat, catchy metal song. One of the best ballads on the album, “Primitive Chaos,” has beautiful, delicate acoustic verses that build to classic, Angra-styled heavier guitar choruses.
Lyrically, the album centers on human emotions. On his website for the project, Edu describes ALMAH as a “so-called universe with a lot of different worlds namely our feelings. Therefore, each person ‘inhabits’ and grows in his own world. To put it simply, some inhabit the world of greed, others the world of courage, hatred, love and so on. This is what defines the personalities of each one of us.” This variety of feeling describes the album sonically as well. Each song seems to possess its own space, giving the album a diverse palate of musical tastes. Fans of creative and varied melodic rock and metal will find this album to be a rare treat.
Myspace URL: http://www.myspace.com/edufalaschi