Soulspell – “The Second Big Bang”


The fourth act of the Soulspell metal opera returns with The Second Big Bang and does not disappoint with another all-star roster of talent showcasing power metal at its finest.

For those unfamiliar with Soulspell and I suspect that may be many readers, Brazilian drummer Heleno Vale writes songs and then assembles and all-star cast of Brazilian and global performers to record the songs.  For this fourth installment, the cast includes and number of signers with impressive careers including: Ralf Sheepers (Primal Fear, Gamma Ray), Tim “Ripper” Owens (Judas Priest, Iced Earth), Timo Kotipelto (Stratovarius), and Blaze Bayley (Iron Maiden), as well as Daisa Munhoz from Vandroya (which released one of my favorite albums so far this year).  As a general rule, the Soulspell rock operas do follow a general musical theme of European power metal with some symphonic and progressive elements thrown in.  Given the all-star cast and genre, one can expect blazing guitar solos throughout as well as an emphasis on the vocals.  This is where some of challenge comes in listening to a project like this in that every song seems to have a different combination of singers and some of the combinations don’t work as well as others  and as a result there can be a disconnected feel to the album since every song sounds different.

Following a short intro piece, the album quickly shifts into high gear for “The Second Big Bang” and it’s incredibly fast riff.  In fact, many of the songs on the album almost feel as if they have been sped up at least from a music standpoint.  Vocals are clear and understandable, but the backing music is going at an amazing speed.  As mentioned previously, the guitar solos are incredible and this will be a recurring theme for the album.  From my perspective, the song has a bit of a Dragonforce feel to it and that can describe much of the album.  Production quality is especially good but expected for a power metal album.  Instruments and vocals are clear in the mix.  I’ve reviewed other all-star projects like this where the various instruments didn’t sound as full integrated into the overall sound as they do here.  If you didn’t know better, you would think this was one full-time band recording everything.

“The End You’ll only Know At The End” slows things down a bit and brings in female vocals from Dasia Munhoz as well and they provide a nice contrast to the male vocals and blend well in the overall sound. In a bit of contrast, Dani Holden (Shadowside) joins Ralf Scheepers on “Horus’s Eye” which has a bit more of an aggressive tone and features the two singers at scream levels from time to time.  Songs like “Game of Hours” features five different singers and when the album gets into that territory, the songs do seem more difficult to track for the listener give the many different vocal styles in the mix.  That being said, in a song like “Sound of Rain” the four vocalists have nearly nine minutes of music to share, so there is significant time for each to work out their parts in a distinct manner.  Add in yet another incredible guitar solo, this time from Kiko Loureiro (Megadeth) and you can’t help but appreciate the epic feel of this album.

Once you understand Soulspell and all the performers involved, one can appreciate why recording The Second Big Bang took five years.  In the end, the rock opera is just as one would expect, and unfortunately in this case that is somehow a small disappointment as I guess I expected more.  Even with that, when you combine the overall epic feel in the arrangements and the strong performances from the talented group of musicians involved you are left with a great power metal release.

Rating: 7.5/10

Written by John Jackson

Tracklist :
01. Time To Set You Free
02. The Second Big Bang
03. The End You’ll Only Know At The End
04. Dungeons And Dragons
05. Horu’s Eye
06. Father And Son
07. White Lion Of Goldah
08. Game Of Hours
09. Super Black Hole
10. Sound Of Rain
11. Soulspell (Apocalypse Version)
12. Alexandria (Apocalypse Version)

Band Members (for live shows)
Heleno Vale – Drums
Jefferson Albert  – Vocals
Daisa Munhoz – Vocals
Pedro Campos  – Vocals
Victor Emeka  – Vocals
Talita Quintano  – Vocals
Daniel Guirado – Vocals, Bass
Leandro Erba – Guitar
Sérgio Pusep – Guitar
Rodrigo Boechat – Keyboards

“Just Let the Time Flows…” Demo (2006)
“A Legacy of Honor” (2008)
“The Labyrinth of Truths” (2010)
“Hollow’s Gathering” (2012) review
‘My Heart Will Go On’ Single (2015)
‘Horus’s Eye’ Single (2017)
”Dungeons and Dragons’ Single (2017)
“The Second Big Bang” (2017)

Record Label: Hellion Records (Brazil) / Inner Wound Recordings (Rest of the World), May 2017

Weblinks: Website / Facebook  Twitter

Buy the album here:
Holland: First Paradox
Norway: Nordic Mission

Video for: ‘Dungeons And Dragons’

Lyric video for: ‘Horus’s eye’

Video for ‘White Lion of Goldah’

Video for ‘The Second Big Bang’


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