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Liar Symphony - Spirit machine 3.5/5

Reviewed: 2-3-06


1. Spirit machine
2. Fire curtain
3. Sacred soldier
4. Look at the sign
5. Death lights
6. Nightmare
7. Through your eyes
8. Blue sky
9. Quest your soul
10. Listen to the hymn
11. Tarot woman (bonus track)

Here we have the 3rd CD 'Spirit machine' from the Brazilian band Liar Symphony. A band that plays pretty straightforward power metal, but with many symphonic parts and the label symphonic power metal could certainly apply. A hint of the familiar Brazilian sound from bands like Angra, Shaaman, Wizards, Glory Opera and Aquaria can be heard, but they also draw influences from some of the Italian bands like Dark Horizon, Kaledon, Dragonhammer and maybe Desdemona.

A few changes within the band have taken place between their previous CD 'The symphony goes on' and 'Spirit machine'. Most notably is vocalist Villo Nolasco has left the band, and the band's creator/guitarist Pedro Esteves has taken over the vocals. I quite liked the vocals of Villo on the band's first 2 CDs, as he would hit the tenor range a few times and seemed to fit the band's musical style very well. But Pedro does a nice job on 'Spirit Machine', with a voice that reminds me of Black Majesty's John Cavaliere, although John is surely a bit better.

The CD starts out quite strong, as track 1 "Spirit machine" greatly resembles the band's previous CDs, and the fast-paced track 2 "Fire curtain" and very symphonic track 3 "Sacred soldier" (which brings Kaledon to mind) are probably the CD's highlights. I also like track 4 "Look at the sign", as it slows down in the middle and has me thinking of some of the slower Angra songs. Track 5 "Death lights" with its powerful riffs that get the song going is another great song, as well as the following "Nightmare" (a plodding but satisfying song). Next up is the ballad-like but very nice track 7 "Through your eyes", which blends with the short instrumental "Blue sky" and its soft guitar solo. Track 9 "Quest your soul" is my least favorite on the CD, as I simply don't care for the chorus, but the final song (not counting the bonus track) "Listen to the hymn" is similar to the first few songs (which is a good thing) and even ends with some funky percussion that Brazilian bands are sometimes known for.

So we end up with a CD that's very solid and one that's definitely recommended to those who have and enjoy the band's first 2 CDs. Personally I like their debut 'Affair of honour' the best, as it contains the song "Die but don't lose" (one of the best songs ever to come out of Brazil) and it's simply the CD I crave the most. I've always liked a good portion of the Brazilian power metal bands and I hope Liar Symphony is one of those bands that will continue to get better.




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