TraumeR - 'Avalon'

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TraumeR - 'Avalon'

Although the musicianship might not rank as the most virtuosic, the song-writing is strong and their execution makes 'Avalon' a solid album overall.

Taking their name from the German word for "dreamer", this Brazilian quintet is clearly heavily influenced by the European Power Metal movement and comparisons to the Michael Kiske-era Helloween will be immediate. The galloping rhythms, double bass thunder, harmonized guitars and majestic vocals are all on display. However, it is all presented with a confidence and accessibility that those familiar with another Brazilian band, albeit an AOR-focused one (Auras), will find as much to enjoy with TraumeR as fans of the aforementioned Helloween and Firewind.

The juxtaposition of the sustained melodies against the energized drumming creates a somewhat weightless quality to the music. Drummer Felipe Santos is the lynchpin of the band, his metronomic timing and ability to execute double time tempos provide a solid foundation on which the songs are built. Nelson Hamada's contribution on keyboards are less technical than some acts but he more than makes up for it by creating lush, atmospheric textures which contribute to the overall mood of the songs.



Guilherme Hirose's vocals are strong, commanding and executed with precision. Songs with slower tempo ('Changes', 'The Song Of Broken Hearts') really allow his voice to demand your attention.

Self-indulgent this band is not. Despite some tracks ('Angel Of The Night' and 'Our Spirit Never Dies') clocking in at well over six minutes in length, TraumeR's compositions never seem ponderous. Although the musicianship might not rank as the most virtuosic, the song-writing is strong and their execution makes 'Avalon' a solid album overall.
A Japanese version including bonus material is being issued, but comment cannot be made since said those extras were not included with the version provided for this review.

Brent Rusche

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