The Second Big Bang

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. Horus’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)

Heleno Vale - Drums

2013: One
2005: Within Shadows EP

Jefferson Albert – Vocals as “Padyal, the Worshipful Master”
Tim “Ripper” Owens – Vocals as “The Holy Dead Tree”
Victor Emeka – Vocals as “Adrian, the Apprentice”
Andre Matos – Vocals as “White Lion of Goldah”
Daísa Munhoz – Vocals as “Princess Judith”
Fabio Lione – Vocals as “Dungeon Master”
Blaze Bayley – Vocals as “Banneth, the Keeper of the Tree”
Timo Kotipelto – Vocals as “Greibach the Mathematician”
Ralf Scheepers – Vocals as “The Clairvoyant”
Arjen Anthony Lucassen – Guitars, Keyboards, Vocals as “Space and Time”
Oliver Hartmann – Vocals as “Space Agency Director”
Pedro Campos – Vocals as “Timo’s Mystical Body”
Dani Nolden Vocals as “The Shadows”
Cleiton Carvalho – Guitars
Eduardo Ardanuy – Guitars
Jani Liimatainen – Guitars
Kiko Loureiro – Guitars
Leandro Erba – Guitars
Rodolfo Pagotto – Guitars
Thiago Amendola – Guitars
Tito Falaschi – Guitars
Markus Grosskopf – Bass
Fábio Laguna – Keyboards
Frank Tischer – Keyboards
Rodrigo Boechat – Keyboards
Eduardo Santos – Drums
Gabriel Viotto – Drums
Camille Kitt – Harp
Kennerly Kitt – Harp

Mixed and Mastered by Dennis Ward
Produced by Tito Falaschi
Cover art by Andreas Marschall

Released 2017-05-25
Reviewed 2017-06-17

inner wound

Heleno Vale and his metal opera Soulspell are returning with a fourth album, it is called The Second Big Bang and features many great names from the metal scene from around the world. Names like Blaze Bayley, Tim Owens, Timo Kotipelto, Andre Matos, and the great Aren Lucassen to name a few. Just by reading the texts about this album one could easily imagine that it is a metal opera akin to the greats like Avantasia and Ayreon, but it isn’t, and these names still stand firmly at the top of the metal opera pedestal. I am not mentioning the project Aina because that album was a one-off and Soulspell like Ayreon and Avantasia has done several albums already so it should be more compared with them than with some all-star project. In reality though I think they have more in common with more common power metal than with any metal opera project.

It is kind of like Avantasia’s earliest works, and the easiest way to describe it is like describing regular power metal with many different singers. A rather standard power metal production, good sound and melody, the album is fairly catchy overall. The singers are all good with Vandroya’s Daísa Munhoz as brightest of the vocal stars, then I always like Arjen Lucassens vocals, and it is nice touches with Arjens guitars and keys on the same track, but that track itself isn’t that great. In fact the album is a bit on the long side and lacks the variation and depth to keep it interesting for the entire playing time that is over an hour. Generally several vocalists make for a good depth and variation in an album but despite the quality of the vocalists the songs on this album does not quite pull that off.

I think that this is a good album overall and it offers good songs, decent energy and decent production. But it isn’t exactly an album that takes advantage of the metal opera format and doesn’t really break any new ground. It is classic and catchy power metal with no real standout track, the one that is standing out is the tenth with some touches of Ayreon which is all good and everything but the track itself isn’t that amazing. I thank the album doesn’t use the storytelling element in the best possible way and as a result we get an album that doesn’t quite take advantage of the possibilities. I think that while it is a good album, it should have been better.

In short: it is a good album, worth taking a closer look at if you like classic power metal and if you like what Soulspell has done before. It may not be breaking any new ground but it is an album you clearly can listen to and enjoy, and why not take the challenge and try to place the band that has inspired the song – most songs on this album sounds (a little too) much like something done by other bands in the past. Soulspell need to find their own soul if they want to be relevant in the increasingly dense metal world.




Label: Inner Wound Recordings
Three similar bands: Angra/Vandroya/Avantasia

Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm

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