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Hibria - The Skull Collectors (CD)

The Skull Collectors
by Grigoris Chronis at 13 March 2009, 9:41 AM

HIBRIA unleashed their first album in 2004/2005. Defying The Rules - for whoever took notice of the CD due in time - became a favorite album, enthroning the Brazilian act on top of the newcomers list that year in the Heavy/Power Metal field. Four years later, HIBRIA decide to bombard us with their sophomore making, initially released in Japan via the Spiritual Beast label (late December 2008) while Remedy Records shall let it loose in late March 2009. You've sinned once if not giving Defying The Rules a chance; now there's no tomorrow…
HIBRIA proposed a couple of demo CDs and a special 'single' release prior to inking deal with Japan's Spiritual Beast and Germany's Remedy Records. Out in 2004/2005, Defying The Rules could as well act as the lethal weapon against anyone claiming Metal is dead. A both 'heavy' and 'metal' album, by all means. Traditional yet fresh, pounding yet melodic, edgy yet conscious. For metalheads seeking for good music not only in established countries (USA, Canada, Germany, Sweden etc), the truth is Brazil has offered a lot of honest metallic work the last two decades (no, I'm not referring to SEPULTURA and ANGRA only, for fuck's sake…) with countless bands filtering our music's ideals with their own out-of-the-market purity and virtue.
Vocals, bass, drums and two guitars: the most typological lineup in a Metal band, I think. HIBRIA changed their drummer for the new album (Savio Sordi was replaced by the band's ex-roadie, Eduardo Baldo) and that's possibly the only different thing in regards to the D.T.R. years. Otherwise, it's the hour of power, no questions asked. If you're a Metal fan protesting there's no good stuff going on in Heavy/Power Metal the last years, then take a listen to this. The Skull Collectors has one and only only disadvantage; the cover artwork could be more of a point of contention for the customer. Still, this should not count that much, especially since heaven will come down succeeding the first audition.
How rare is the chance nowadays to listen to an album so consistent that all songs are equally bombastic threatening? Nearly 50 minutes of soaring power, featuring a killer production (mixed and mastered in Germany by Achim Kohler, responsible for albums made by BRAINSTORM, PINK CREAM 69, SODOM and AMON AMARTH) that omits nothing from the band's horsepower while unveiling a rural dignity not often met in 'major' bands. The Skull Collectors will not pat you in the back, promising something for nothing; the album's blasting might and relentless atmosphere shall subsequently direct countless other bands, claiming to be playing Metal music with guts, to be treated as a figure of fun.
Iuri Sanson's vocals are even better this time; he's an air raid siren often (nothing irritating, of course), but without losing the mid-range straightforwardness and simplicity needed in most 'fist held high' parts. His performance is 666% convincing and he's the real deal if you're looking for something like a mix of Tim Ripper Owens, Ralf Scheepers, Rob Rock, Andy Deris (in his blasting HELLOWEEN/PC 69 heyday) and Jeff Martin (in his RACER X days). The bass/drums are hammering down and the guitars work is immense, with towering riffs, endless dozes of leads and licks, original songwriting (ideal for fans of bands like PRIMAL FEAR, IMPELLITTERI, exceptional GAMMA RAY, the top makings of FIREWIND, post-80s ANGEL DUST, BRAINSTORM and you-can guess-the-rest-of many others) and spotless aim for non-cheesy Metal madness. Madness reigns….
…in the hall of HIBRIA. The Skull Collectors is an in-your-face 00's Metal assault, nothing less. Can hardly recall how many times I've been blown off by an album's integrity/guts the last decade. Frankly, HIBRIA and their so far discography would all be certified as 'classic' in a fair world. You'll go home in a box listening to this one, you've been warned.

4 Star Rating

Tiger Punch
Reborn From The Ashes
Screaming Ghost
Sea Of Revenge
The Anger Inside
Devoted To Your Fear
The Skull Collectors
Burning All The Flags
Wings Of Wax
Iuri Sanson - Vocals
Abel Camargo - Guitars
Diego Kasper - Guitars
Marco Panichi - Bass
Eduardo Baldo - Drums
Record Label: Remedy Records


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