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Well-rounded power metal with a world music scope sans Viking helmets and light on the fantastic imagery comes courtesy of Brazil's Angra and their latest 10-track release AURORA CONSURGENS. Juxtaposing elements of progressive metal a la Queensryche with the power metal played by bands like Manowar and Blind Guardian, this disc gets both operatic and oppressively heavy, sometimes, as in the case on "Salvation: Suicide", at the same time. Expressing their need for speed with the same vigor as they convey their yearning to reach the nougat-filled creamy chorus center on cuts like "The Voice Commanding You", Angra makes a metallic concept album about a religious manuscript by Saint Thomas of Aquin the subject matter of one hell of a power metal release.
- Mike SOS