Reviews: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Adiastasia - Life War
   
Musical Style: Power Metal Produced By: Adiastasia
Record Label: Bombworks Country Of Origin: Brazil
Year Released: 2006/2010 Artist Website:
Tracks: 11 Rating: 75%
Running Time: 59:00

Adiastasia - Life War

A literal flood of Christian metal bands have come out of Brazil in recent years.  And Adiastasia, with its double bass driven brand of power metal, is the next in line in what has been at times an erratic and at others a very rewarding succession of talent to originate from the country in question: Belica, Destra, Dracma, Dynasty, Eterna, Menahem, Seven Angels, Shining Star, Stauros, Sunroad and many others.  So how does Adiastasia measure up?  Quite well, as a matter of fact.  Easily inviting comparison to Stratovarius, Helloween and Gamma Ray but also certain to appeal to fans of Seventh Avenue, Divinefire and Dynasty, Adiastasia combines elements of speed and aggression with occasional symphonic and progressive touches to create quite the powerful full length debut Life War.

Originally a Bombworks Records release from late 2006, Life War was re-mixed, re-mastered and re-issued in the summer of 2010 - again on Bombworks – with new album artwork.

Life War delivers its share of variety, ranging from up-tempo numbers “Father Of Light” (neo-classical touches) and “Kingdom Of Glory” (plenty of double bass) to mid-paced pieces “Freedom Call” (emotional feel) and “Eternal Life” (symphonic elements).  You will also find a couple of progressive based tracks – the dramatic “A Terra” and palatial “Adiastasia” – along with two lengthy ballads in “By Dreams” and “The Winner”.

Musically, I might describe the album as above average to good but not quite great.  At this point it must be reinforced that the material here is well crafted and ably performed; there is no filler, throwaway tracks and nothing I skip over.  That said, something seems to be missing at the same time- and that is the catchy hooks needed to pull me in with repeated listen.  In other words, the songs do not grab me.

Now, in no way am I implying there is not melody.  Yes, you will find melody but it is somewhat subtle- almost too subtle for my taste.  Part of the problem is that the songs are too long, with four clocking in at the seven minute range and two others over six.  This is an issue I find particularly troublesome with the albums two ballads, which never seem to end.  Perhaps if the guys had tightened up their songwriting things might have held up a bit better.

Irregardless, the overall feeling is that Adiastasia at this early stage in its career is not quite on the same level musically as countrymen Angra, Scelerata and Eterna- not to mention Stratovarious, Gamma Ray and Helloween.  But the potential is there.

And that potential comes in the form of the bands musical abilities.  It all starts with the classic tenor vocal style of Jeff Winner.  Occasionally cutting loose in high pitched falsetto fashion, Winner puts forth a professional performance that brings to mind Rob Rock and Timo Kotipelto (Stratovarius) but when reaching down low he hints at Mike Lee (Barren Cross).

Janinho Di’Nizz delivers the goods on rhythm and lead guitar, adorning the album with his tight as a nail and at times fluid playing.  As a matter of fact, Adiastasia must be commended for the confidence it exhibits in its instrumental sound, best showcased on the abundant instrumental sections gracing “The Winner”, “Father Of Light”, “Kingdom Of Glory” and “A Terra”.  Ryvson Lacerda adds the needed touch on keyboards while the rhythm section of bassist Joab Marynne and drummer Dinho Caetano anchors the low end strong and steady.

In my original review of Life War (from late 2006) I described the production as “crisp and clean but slightly raw”.  The re-mastering of the re-issue cleans things up by balancing the mix – the guitars deliver more bite and the low end added weight – while highlighting a previously lacking element of polish.  As a result, I upped the final grade from 70% to 75%.

Adiastasia - Life War

“Guerra Della Vita” is a keyboard based instrumental with an orchestral feel.

“Father Of Light” commences to a pounding riff backed by medieval flavored vocal harmonies before taking off in double bass driven fashion.  Maintaining the vibrant momentum throughout its verses, the song makes a smooth transition to a sweeping chorus that details the person of Christ:

He’s the way, He’s the Savior of this world
He’s alive, He’s the greatest miracle of the Lord
He’s the Father of Light, He’s the Way, the Truth, the Life

A lead guitar and keyboard trade off shores up an extensive instrumental section.

“The Fellowship” kicks in at an upbeat tempo, galloping through its first two verses prior to tapering for a decisive chorus in which Jeff Winner makes effective use of his high end vocal abilities.  The lead guitar helps uphold another lengthy instrumental excursion.  “The Fellowship” is a song of God’s grace:

I’ve got a King and I live by His grace
I was in darkness but now I’m saved
We are light and prophets of the land
Fighting together free
We can fly as eagles in the sky
Running against the time

The pace slows for the more tempered “Freedom Call”.  The song begins its first verse quietly before a crisp rhythm guitar fades in, gradually leading the way until a flowing chorus with a heavy and driving feel is obtained.  The only problem is that at just over six and a half minutes “Freedom Call” is a bit too long for its own good.  Beautiful message, though:

Fly forever with the wings of Light
Now we can dream, now I say
We’re alive by the grace
Now we can live to You Lord
By Your sacrifice, sacrifice

Getting underway to a symphonic joining of guitar and keyboards, “Eternal Life” drives its way forward at a sublime mid-tempo pace.  Briefly pausing for a passage fortified by backing vocals with a medieval flair, the song culminates for a quickly moving chorus upheld by rapid double bass.  This one is aptly entitled:

He’s the Way, He’s coming back
And I know how short is the time
To pray for you and every one
To give you the true and the life

They don’t see the sing of the Light
Don’t see the sign of the Light
Jesus gave the chance for all
To live the eternal life

An all out double bass driven riff launches “Kingdom Of Glory”, a plethora of frenzied initiative urging things ahead until it acquires a fleeting chorus carried at an energetic upbeat tempo.  The driving blend of rhythm guitar and keyboards opening an extensive instrumental section give way to a blazing guitar solo.  The subject at hand is spiritual warfare:

Angels fighting together, humans day by day
Asking mercy in the silence for the mission of the warrior
Hey, what are you waiting to understand?
Hear the kingdom of glory calling you to be a warrior

A quietly played guitar compels the ballad “By Dreams” through its first verse.  Gently picking up in pace, the song evenly advances on an ambient chorus underscored by militant style drums.  As “By Dreams” gains further impetus upon flowing ahead, the rhythm guitar steps forward to reinforce its second chorus in the more pronounced sounding manner.  Again, we have another track that is simply too long; ballads in the seven minute range rarely if even hold my attention.

“A Terra” is the only number here with lead vocals in Portuguese (an English translation is not provided).  An epic environs prevails as the song takes off, cutting a path of decisive momentum prior to picking up in pace for a lofty chorus in which keyboards play a highlighting role.  Adiastasia once more shines during an instrumental interlude in which it displays its copious musicianship.

“Adiastasia”, the bands signature tracks, chops its way forward to an ominous riff as keyboards decorate the backdrop.  Once the rhythm guitar moves to a forward place in the mix for its first verse, the song pushes ahead hard and heavy until acquiring a high energy chorus with a worshipful feel:

When the evil comes I claim to save my life
The name of the hero, lord of heroes Jesus Christ
Son of the Man, son of the Father of the Light
The Adiastasia, perfect glory of the Lord, praise the Lord

I enjoy how things taper to medieval vocal harmonies that transition to an instrumental passage sustained by a technical guitar solo.

“The Winner” is the albums second ballad coming in at past seven minutes.  A piano slowly compels the song through its first verse until the rhythm guitar crashes in, underscoring the chorus that ensues in resounding but emotional fashion.  The final two and a half minutes are instrumental as a crisp rhythm guitar is joined by a blend of double bass and piano.  Lyrics fit the music at hand:

Many tears I cried
But now I see the way of Light
I can see the winner’s prize
The strength returns to me

Torments passed
But now I feel peace of mind
Jesus leads me to the Light
Can make the same for you… your life

Closing things out is the mostly spoken word piece “Consumatum Est”.

The key word in dealing with Adiastasia is potential.  That potential comes in the form of the group’s performance, encompassing the abundant vocal abilities of Jeff Winner and notable musicianship throughout, particularly from guitarist Janinho Di’Nizz.  Songwriting wise, Life War has a lot of good moments but for the most part the material here – as previously stated – lacks the hooks needed to pull me in with repeated listen.  I cannot help but think this is an area reflecting the groups lack of experience; with that in mind, I anticipate any future project from Adiastasia to display marked improvement.

Review by: Andrew Rockwell

Track Listing: “Guerra Della Vita” (2:24), “Father Of Light” (5:58), “The Fellowship” (5:08), “Freedom Call” (6:40), “Eternal Life” (4:21), “Kingdom Of Glory” (5:24), “By Dreams” (7:06), “A Terra” (6:49), “Adiastasia” (6:39), “The Winner” (7:02), “Consumatum Est” (1:22)

Musicians
Jeff Winner – Lead Vocals
Janinho Di’Nizz – Guitars
Ryvson Lacerda – Keyboards
Joab Marynne – Bass
Dinho Caetano – Drums

Guest Musicians
Leandro Farias - Guitars

 

Reviews: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
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