Artist: Tempest  
   Title: Bring Em On
   Label: Metal Heaven

Tempestt, thatís two Tís and donít you forget it, hail from that, not so hotbed of rockíníroll, Brazil.  They started, as a lot do, as a covers band and this is where they have refined their craft, including time as Jeff Scott Sotoís backing band during his tour in 2001. They have now put together a slice of progressive melodic hard rock.

Kicking off the album is 'Faked By Time', and straightaway the Dream Theater influence is evident, a staccato drum and guitar opening, then vocalist BJ with his LaBrie inflected vocals, (i said inflected, not infected!!) eases himself into the song. The chorus may not be the catchiest Iíve heard but the song has great melody and some understated keyboards.  Guitarist Gustavo Barros lays down a blistering solo but hereís more to this guy than widdling.

Next up is the title track 'Bring ĎEm On', a combination of early Images and Words with some Scenes from a Memory and hints of Megadeth style riffarama.  Once again BJís vocals standout on this track, soaring and melodic.

A favourite track is up next, 'A Lifeís Alibi', a piano driven tune with great vocals and some wonderful keyboard orchestration after the solo.

Another favourite follows in the shape of 'Insanity Desire'.  This song features Mr Scott Soto and wouldnít be out of place on either a Talisman album or his solo work.  This song has a slow burn feel to it and bassist Paulo Soza gets to flex his digits just before another blistering guitar solo.  BJ and JSS are well suited vocally with JSS puting in a vocal performance that sounds like he isnít even trying too hard.

'Too High' is another well constructed song, it has a JSS style groove to it with DT leanings and a big melodic chorus.

Continuing with 'Enemy In You', another piano led song, the band show what they are capable of, well crafted and structured songs with great melodies.

'Fallen Moon' has a guitar driven intro until the verse where BJís strong melodic vocals kick in.  This is a great song let down only by a poor chorus.

Then weíre onto 'Lose Control', which sounds like it was written for Malmsteen with itís guitar and double kick opening.  The pre-chorus  and chorus is very reminiscent of DT but then again the whole album has that influence flowing throughout and itís not like itís a bad thing unless you detest DT.

Next up is 'Healing', just acoustic guitar from Gustavo and some sublime vocals from BJ.  Considering english is his second language his phrasing and lyrics are excellent.

Penultimate song on the album, Higher (I Can Land), features a big and powerful guitar sound and the best melodic chorus on the album.  The solo is almost Zappa-esque in itís construction. This is another song that has a groove to it and gradually works itís way through the skin, a standout track and favourite.

And so weíre on to the last song, a cover of Journeyís 'Donít Stop Believing'.  Now Iím a HUGE Journey fan and this song feels out of place on the album. But the keyboard improvisation gives it a bit of an edge along with Gustavoís wonderful guitar work.

So there you have it, Tempestt are bringing Ďem on for you. This is a fine debut and shows and gives the band something to build on. The band members are more than competent musicians, Edu Cominato is solid on drums with some great technical touches, Paulo Soza also has a technical edge to his bass playing while Gustavo excels on guitar and in BJ they have a strong and powerful vocalist who will only get better with time.  This may not be the best album youíll hear this year but you could do worse than pick up a copy.  Give a young up coming band a go.

*Review by Brassy

Tracklisting:

1 Faked By Time
2 Bring Em' On
3 A Life's Alibi
4 Insanity Desire
5 Too High
6 Enemy In You
7 Fallen Moon
8 Lose Control
9 Healing
10 Don't Stop Believing
                   

 

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