Henk : This is what makes writing at Lords Of Metal so much fun. Sometimes you get sent something that you initially do not know what to do with it until the CD in question starts to work into your system. 'Barbarians In Black' by Brazilian Armored Dawn is such a good example. In the opening track 'Beware Of The Dragon' the listener may think that there is just another power metal outfit. A straightforward power metal song that is just okay but not really great because of the very poor vocals. The moment I am gearing up for the rest of the review, suddenly jewels of songs are heard like 'Bloodstone' and the atmospheric 'Men Of Odin'. In these songs singer Eduardo Parras convinces much more than in that weak opening track.
Fortunately this remains on the rest of the album and there are a lot more super cool and beautiful metal songs. There is also nothing wrong with the sound of the album. Leave that to Seeb Levermann, who previously worked with bands like Orden Ogan and Rhapsody Of Fire. Musically the band plays many different styles that are fused together to create their own sound. One can hear traditional heavy metal go hand in hand with more progressive sounds and a band like In Flames must have had a considerable influence on Armored Dawn. This is mainly evident in the guitar parts that pop up regularly in various songs and the voice of Eduardo that is a bit like Anders Friden. The keyboard parts of guitarist / keyboard player Rafael Agostino also refer to the Swedish metal band. 'Survivor', on the other hand, is just classic hard rock which makes it a standout track on the album. Live this will definitely be a highlight of the show.
The best song of the album however, is the beautiful first single 'Sail Away'. A semi ballad that has everything that makes this band so damn good. Melody, heaviness and excellent song writing go hand in hand which results in one of the best tracks from 2018 so far. The song is, in my opinion, an instant classic. In short, Armored Dawn delivers a great effort with 'Barbarians In Black' and makes sure that another early highlight is already there in 2018. Very soon on the road as support for Saxon on their European tour.