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A Review of the Album "Holy Land" by Brazilian Power Metal Band Angra

Ara is a Journalism graduate from California State University Northridge who is always looking to explore his writing opportunities.

The front of the album for Holy Land

The front cover for the album represents a very old map. In the 15th and 16th centuries much colonization took place.

The front cover for the album represents a very old map. In the 15th and 16th centuries much colonization took place.

Track Listing for the album Holy Land

  1. The Crossing (music by Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina)
  2. Nothing to Say
  3. Silence and Distance
  4. Carolina the 4th
  5. Holy Land
  6. The Shaman
  7. Make Believe
  8. Z.I.T.O.
  9. Deep Blue
  10. Lullaby for Lucifer

The lineup for the album Holy Land

Andre Matos: vocals

Kiko Loureiro: guitars and backing vocals

Rafael Bittencourt: guitars and backing vocals

Luis Mariutti: bass guitars

Ricardo Confessori: drums

A Brief description of the concept behind the album Holy Land

Brazilian power metal veterans Angra returned to the studio after a solid debut album called Angels Cry. The result is the album Holy Land. This 1996 album is a concept album that talks about Brazilian land that was discovered by the 16th century. The album also deals with Portuguese colonization and the changes that occurred in Brazil. Vocalist Andre Matos also plays the piano, keyboards, and the organ.

The back of the cover for Holy Land

On the back cover is a stone slab drawing with the names of the songs of the album along with other artwork.

On the back cover is a stone slab drawing with the names of the songs of the album along with other artwork.

Analysis of the Songs Silence and Distance, Carolina the 4th, and Holy Land

The piano can be heard in the song Silence and Distance. Angra in terms of its style isn’t just your standard power metal band. They use classical influences as well and they have piano parts which only makes them more diverse as a band.

In the ten minute plus song "Carolina the 4th" it is once again about a group of people discovering a new set of lands after a long journey. The use of the piano is here once again as the song makes a transition into a classical type of part. If there is one great quality about Angra other than their solid vocals, it is their ability to incorporate time changes in their songs and make it fit with the songs themselves. The song "Holy Land" is classified as a song with folk influences as well as having classical influences. I would say that this is one of the weaker songs in the album.

The second half of the album Holy Land is made impressive by the song Deep Blue

After a so-so kind of song called "The Shaman," the album gets better with the song "Make Believe." The song is about a person that wants to plan his future but he is letting fate dictate his circumstances in life. He feels like a lonely man who has no hope. He is left wondering how he can pick up the pieces of his shattered life. The message in the song is that if you want to change your life, you have to take action instead of hoping, wishing or praying that things will get better. I sound like a life coach even though I’m not. Then comes a power metal classic called "Z.I.T.O." Then comes the beautiful slower song called "Deep Blue." It is about waiting for the day that the ocean and sky will be covered in a deep blue kind of color bring a sort of peace and tranquility to the land. The song has one of the most beautiful guitar solos you will ever hear! It has so much passion and feeling that it may bring tears to your eyes. The album ends with the short acoustic song called Lullaby for Lucifer. There are sounds of the waves crashing the sea shore as the guitar playing. It is a relaxing way to end a good album.

Favorite song on the album Holy Land

"Carolina IV"

About the song Nothing to Say and Final Thoughts

Holy Landis not as good as Angels Cry but it is still a good release by Brazil’s best power metal band. One other song that I did not mention is the song called "Nothing to Say." Following the short classical cover song, the next song is about living for life itself and making the most of it. The guilt and shame that we feel as human beings can really drag us down and make us feel that we are not really worth anything.

Even so, Holy Land is one of the more solid works in the history of Angra. As of June 8, 2019 however, Andre Matos is not around to witness how well this album has aged. He died of a heart attack at the young age of 47. I will miss the soothing parts of Matos’ voice in the song “Carolina the 4th” where he says “I’ve been such a fool.” Mr. Matos you have been such a wonderful asset to the power metal genre and you will be dearly missed.

Name of the album released after Holy Land

For each question, choose the best answer. The answer key is below.

  1. What is the name of the Angra album released after Holy Land?
    • Fireworks
    • Enchanted Symphony
    • Gates of Oblivion

Answer Key

  1. Fireworks

"Z.i.t.o."

Rate Angra's album Holy Land

© 2016 Ara Vahanian