Solid debut album from Brazilian power metalers
The Nation of Brazil is not a stranger when it comes to heavy metal. The earliest pioneers of Brazilian born metal bands would include the once mighty Sepultura, who really put Brazil on the map in the metal world. Other bands would include Angra, Andre Matos, DragonHeart, Shaman, Dark Avenger; and most recently Hibria. But now a newcomer from Brazil has raised the Brazilian flag high in the air and I speak of power/progressive metal band, Magician.
Formed in the year 2000, Magician released a demo CD in 2002, entitled Brief Magic Story. Years went by and finally after being picked up by the Dockyard1 label, Magician released their debut album in 2008, called Tales Of The Magician. The album was mixed and mastered in Germany by Dirk Schlachter and Kai Hansen of Gamma Ray; and also Arne Lakenmacher, who was worked with bands such as Nevermore, Primal Fear and Kreator.
Tales Of The Magician is a fantasy conceptual album, telling the story of Zhaldor, a magician seeking to free his homeland from an underworld terror. As far a debut albums go, Tales Of The Magician is quite good, with the music not just restricted to power metal. There are also many progressive metal passages and also some folk elements too; to give their music a bombastic and epic feel. Throughout the duration I could hear similarities with early Angra and also Rhapsody (Of Fire); but without their “Hollywood” style productions. Vocalist Dan Rubin is suited well to this style, despite his vocals being a tad on the gruff side at times. He has a fair amount of range and delivery, but also delivers a lot of passion and strength into each song.
After the building introduction, the first track kicks off, entitled Prime Evil. This track is one of the better tracks on the album, with a galloping melodic riff, and a decent solo to boot. After the disappointing second track (Underworld Terror) and the decent third track Sandstorm, we come to Terminal Day. This track is quite epic sounding and lengthy too, clocking in at just under seven minutes. After a slow ballad-esk build up, the song speeds up and rumbles along for the remainder. One of the best tracks on the album, the song is melodic, creative, wonderfully structured and emotional.
The album kicks on with the next track Dark Ritual (Hear Your Master's Call), another lengthy epic track; before the next kick ass track begins. Minstrel's Domain is quite folkish in sound, containing acoustic guitar and wind instruments in part, to be followed by a mean chunky guitar riff in between. The song is again melodic, and sung beautifully by Dan Rubin. Siege Of Zelgian follows and is another standout track on the album. This track is straight out power metal, with thundering double bass, fast guitar riffs and soaring vocals. The CD is rounded out with the final two tracks, the epic Crossing The Last Gate and the finale Let The Harmony Endure.
There is a lot to enjoy from Tales Of The Magician, especially if you are a fan of prog/power metal and folk metal. Magician have structured their songs nicely to include all those genres, to give you an album full of variety, difference and creativity. Although it may not be ground-breaking, Tales Of The Magician is still a solid debut release that will spend plenty of time spinning in your CD player. Fans of Angra and Rhapsody (Of Fire) will especially like Magician, as to the musical similarities between the three bands. Nice effort.