Eterna - Terra Nova
Crash Music
Power / Progressive Metal
11 songs (59'13)
Release year: 2002
Eterna, Crash Music
Reviewed by Marty
The latest release by this Brazilian band is actually a combination of both new and older, re-recorded material. This is my first exposure to this band even though their two previous albums, The Gate and Papyrus have both been reviewed here at Metal Reviews. Power metal, melodic speed metal and progressive metal are certainly my favorite types of metal and I must admit though that there is an over abundance of that sort of metal coming out. It's getting to the point that you really can't keep up with all the new bands coming out in those genres. That being said, the bar has definitely been raised and bands that come out with nothing really new to add or are without a clear musical focus, run the risk of falling through the cracks and being ignored in favor of the bands that put out a much higher quality product. The reason I'm sounding off on this topic is that Eterna is one of those bands that are still struggling to measure up to the standards set by many other bands in the same genre even after three albums.

This album features 5 new songs, one song, Motherland is also presented as Terra Nova with lyrics in Portuguese. As well, a radio edit of this is added at the end. Fellow countrymen Angra did both English and Portuguese versions of Hunters and Prey on their last E.P. As well , 4 tracks from the Papyrus album have been re-recorded here with their current line-up. Musically speaking, this band covers a lot of territory. Songs range from mid-tempo epic styles to faster speedy power metal and even a couple of very progressively flavored tracks. The overall sound of the band is very good with their vocalist having a very strong and passionate delivery style. He reminds me of Dio at times and also has some Geoff Tate like qualities to his singing. Vocal lines are often doubled up with backing vocal tracks and most songs feature very catchy choruses. The band even ventures into the territory of a more melodic metal style which seems to work well for them as well. The Queensryche influence is also heard in some of the music with the tempo and the big melodic sustaining riffs that were a staple of the classic Queensryche sound of the 80's. The band dabbles a bit with some very sharp and abrupt tempo changes often erupting into lengthy instrumental interludes. These sections often are highlighted by lots of lead guitar as well as lots of keyboard and synthesizer fills. This band often combines many different styles of metal all within the same song, as dramatic and epic Savatage style passages are sometimes followed by speedy double bass / guitar riffs as the song moves from verse to chorus and back to verse again.

Contrary to the reviews of their last 2 albums, I didn't find the keyboards to be too over-powering. They fall into place quite nicely adding atmosphere and melody to most of the songs without stealing away the spotlight from the guitars. The production is not bad, but the guitars sound very thin and have a very trebly sound to them. The one thing that really weakens the album for me are 2 of the 4 re-recorded tracks. Two of them are really good with the other two being very sub-standard and definitely not of the same quality as the rest of the songs on this album. I get the sense that this is a band that has the talent and the sound but is still trying to forge an identity for themselves in a very over-crowded genre.

If you're into bands like Queensryche, Fates Warning, Symphony X and Labyrinth as well as the more melodic speed metal style of Stratovarius and Sonata Arctica you will definitely find something on this album to your liking. There's nothing really wrong with this band, they sound good and have a great singer, it's just that the overall songwriting is not as consistent as it needs to be to get noticed by the ever discerning metal fan. Eterna are above average as far as what is coming out from the newer bands, but still have a ways to go to tighten up their sound into a solid product that will be able to compete with the heavy hitters in the same genre. I quite enjoy most of this release and if the quality of the new songs is any indication, then I have a feeling that this band is finally going to hit their stride with their next album.

Killing Songs :
Motherland (Terra Nova), Desert Moon and Da Pacem Domine
Marty quoted no quote
Other albums by Eterna that we have reviewed:
Eterna - The Gate reviewed by Mike and quoted 70 / 100
Eterna - Papyrus reviewed by Chris and quoted 61 / 100
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