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4.25 | 57 ratings | 5 reviews
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Album · 2004

Filed under Progressive Metal


1. Deus le Volt! (0:52)
2. Spread Your Fire (4:25)
3. Angels and Demons (4:10)
4. Waiting Silence (4:55)
5. Wishing Well (3:59)
6. The Temple of Hate (5:13)
7. The Shadow Hunter (8:04)
8. No Pain for the Dead (5:05)
9. Winds of Destination (6:56)
10. Sprouts of Time (5:09)
11. Morning Star (7:39)
12. Late Redemption (4:55)
13. Gate XIII (5:02)

Total Time: 66:29


- Edu Falaschi / vocals
- Kiko Loureiro / guitars
- Rafael Bittencourt / guitars
- Aquiles Priester / drums
- Felipe Andreolli / bass

- Zeca Loureiro / Vocals (Choirs) (Tracks 2 & 9)
- Miro Rodenberg / Keyboards
- Yaniel Matos / Cello
- Silvia Góes / Piano (Track 10)
- Douglas "ShakerHand" Las Casas / Percussion
- Rita Maria / Vocals (Choirs) (Tracks 2 & 9)
- Tito Falaschi / Vocals (Choirs) (Tracks 2 & 9)
- Dennis Ward / Vocals (Backing) (Tracks 3, 4 & 9)
- Fábio Laguna / Keyboards
- Sabine Edelsbacher / Vocals (Tracks 2 & 8)
- Kai Hansen / Vocals (Track 6)
- Hansi Kürsch / Vocals (Track 9)
- Milton Nascimento / Vocals (Track 12)

About this release

Release date: September 2004
Label: SPV

Thanks to progshine, DippoMagoo, tupan, diamondblack, adg211288 for the updates


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siLLy puPPy
One of the reasons TEMPLE OF SHADOWS is such a highlight in the discography of Brazilian power metal band ANGRA is because this is the album where they seriously began to incorporate progressive influences into their already powerful take on highly energetic melodic metal. They also create a behemoth of a concept album tackling the issue of a saga of a crusader knight known as The Shadow Hunter who fights against the ideals of the Catholic Church in the 11th century. The album is as energetic as any Dragonforce album but incorporates a gazillion influences like an early Dream Theater release would. The result is a diverse sounding album that takes progressive rock ideas and marries them with power metal and adds native Brazilians sounds and lots more.

Diverse influences can be found in tracks like “Wishing Well” which has a neo-prog feel to it especially in the intro reminding me a bit of Marillion. “Shadow Hunter” has flamenco and a strong Spanish feel to it. Symphonic intros and interludes are plentiful beginning with the very first track but it takes little time at all for the powerful crunch of the melodic march of thundering guitars to signify the triumph of the tasty tunes taking full form. This is an album that I like quite a bit but not to the extent that many others seem to. I find this an exciting ride up to about the last few tracks when I feel the album should have ended. The intensity of the album seems to fizzle out around then and a bunch mellow ballads are not a great way to end this album. In comparison to other successful concept albums this one does not blend the songs together as brilliantly as I think they should considering the subject matter. Nitpickiness aside, this is a great progressive power metal ride.
On Temple of Shadows, Angra present a skilled combination of Iron Maiden-influenced power metal and Queensryche-influenced progressive metal. If forced to assign it to one particular category I'd say it's more like prog-influenced power metal than powered-up prog metal, though even this doesn't tell the whole of the story, with some traditional Brazilian music from their homeland working its way into the mix here and there.

Eduardo Falaschi embodies the band's fusion style, reminiscent as he is of the best of Bruce Dickinson or Operation: Mindcrime-era Geoff Tate, and he's joined by a small cast of guest vocalists who are used tastefully to heighten the drama of the album. The band as a whole show expert judgement in playing to the strengths of both power and progressive metal whilst avoiding the pitfalls of both genres; the power metal side to them stops the prog side getting excessively pompous and technical for technicality's sake, whilst their prog side means that where some power metal bands would just cheese out Angra always manage to pull off a surprise which keeps the listener guessing. In short, it's the best of both worlds with the worst of neither.
Angra is not only one of the icons of Power Metal, but they are also one of those bands that tread the lines between Power and Prog, enough that they have been accepted as Progressive Metal in some circles. And if I were to pick one album from their collection to say "this is why", Temple of Shadows would be the one I'd pick as evidence. This is a very well rounded album, with a very good dynamic range between acoustic and electric, loud moments and quiet moments, time given to breathe and plenty of "rock out" moments. For myself, I consider this a candidate for Angra's magnum opus - it's a tough choice between this album and "Rebirth", but this is where I feel Angra were at their peak both creatively and as far as showing their musical ability.
Since I was a little bit disappointed with Rebirth, I turned to this album, and to be honest I was very surprised. I really didn't expect it to be this good, I mean, it's just a perfect album really.

Conceptually based on a pre medieval knight named "The Shadow Knight", who in his dismissal at modern Christianity, decided to find true meaning in God, but instead discovered his own religion (kind of like an early Martin Luther). I did wonder about the actual personal faiths of the band (because they're from Brazil, I expected a strong Christian faith), but reading deeper into it they seemed to have a more either Universalistic faith or they have no faith, and are just Atheists.

This album excels beyond Rebirth, with stronger and more listenable material, and interesting concept, and some amazing guest performers. Technically, these guys have excelled as well.

1. Deus Le Voit! - It's an intro; they all start of like this I think. 8/10

2. Spread Your Fire - Great kick ass song, really grabs you by the balls. Kick ass chorus. The choral arrangements remind me of Therion. 10/10

3. Angels & Demons - One of the greatest intros to a prog metal song I have ever heard. Just epic, with an amazing chorus. Best song on the album. 10/10

4. Waiting Silence - Some odd timing bits and impressive instrumental work. Great chorus as well. 9/10

5. Wishing Well - Very cheesy, but so good. Amazing chorus and a killer vocal performance. 10/10

6. Temple Of Hate - Kai Hansen's vocals in this song rule. Quite dark and very kick ass. Ja w dropping instrumental work. 9/10

7. The Shadow Hunter - Great flamenco intro. Pretty epic. The vocal harmonies in the middle section are very beautiful and really surprised me. Killer chorus. 10/10

8. No Pain For The Dead - Intro reminds me of Road Trippin' by Red Hot Chilli Peppers. Nice and laidback. Yay, Sabrine from Edenbridge is in this song, I love Edenbridge, and anything with her in it, grabs my attention. Great arrangement. 10/10

9. Winds Of Destination - Again quite dark and heavy. Hansi from Blind Guardian does an amazing vocal performance in this song. Very proggy with some odd changes in tone. The solo piano and vocal section reminds me of The Flower Kings. The guitar work is pretty impressive. 9/10

10. Sprouts Of Time - Has quite a jazzy edge. The instrumental section is just amazing. Epic chorus for an epic song. 10/10

11. Morning Star - A nice mix of heavy and light textures. Pretty nice chorus. 8/10

12. Late Redemption - The death of the Shadow Knight. I love the fact that some lyrics are sung in Portuguese, which is a very rare language to hear sung (well, if you are Irish haha). Beautiful arrangement. Great vocals. 10/10

13. Gate XIII - Credits basically. The return of some of the albums main themes wonderfully portrayed. 9/10

CONCLUSION: When it comes to Progressive or Power Metal, this is one of those albums that really stand out. Just an epic album from start to finish, with a wide range of influences and maturity of song writing. Buy this now

"Temple of Shadows" is the second studio album with singer Eduardo Falaschi after Angra's major line up reformation in 2001 and introduces a concept story told by guitarist Rafael Bittencourt about a crusader in the 11th century spreading a new belief against the traditional Catholic Church. This album was certified gold in Japan and in their hometown, Brazil, and for a non-mainstream album, that’s a pretty big achievement. Their musical style is still symphonic power metal with some progressive element but this time, they enriched the music with many ethnical instruments. For those who love concept albums such as Dream Theater's "Scenes From A Memory" or Queensryche's "Operation Mindcrime" will find this instantly entertaining, but for me, aside from an interesting story, the music is what's crucial.

I won't break this album down track by track, but let me start with the strong offering on the album. "Spread Your Fire", a pompous symphonic power metal with the glorious chant at the Chorus is awesome. Angra is smart enough to put this up at the beginning of the album to pump up the mood. This track was defeated by the sixth track, "Temple of Hate", with a stunning shred intro and tightly constructed with a superb Verse and Chorus. Bittencourt's guitarworks is the highlight of the song and this is the greatest song of the whole record. The acoustical folk power ballad of "Wishing Well" is also tremendous and the amazing combo of jazz and ethnic at "Sprouts of Time" is undeniably great. Some decent prog/power style of "Angels And Demons" and "Waiting Silence" still worth to listen but several tracks such as "Morning Star" and "Late Redemption" are totally passable. "Shadow Hunter" did have a unique gloomy Flamenco intro and promising start, but somehow the whole composition turned out weak and became my least pick of the album.

In my opinion, "Temple of Shadows" lacks of songwriting consistency where almost half of the album is weaker than the others, but perhaps only 2-3 songs are pure fillers, while the other still have some glowing moment. The technical deliveries of the musicians are flawless but the uneven songs are the low key. With some spectacular delivery on the wonderful songs, "Temple of Shadows" was saved from being condemned a mediocre attempt. For fans of power and progressive metal, this album is a good buy, and for hardcore fans of Angra, this could be a better effort compared to couple of Matos-era albums.

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