Thursday, January 29, 2009

ALMAH is the best according to Whiplash editorial crew

ALMAH has been chosen as the best national (Brazilian) band 2008 according to the biggest Bazilian metal webzine Whiplash. Almah's album "Fragile Equality" has won two nominations: the best national CD 2008 and the best national cover artwork 2008. Almah has got the 2nd place in "the best national show" nomination. See the complete results here. Congratulations to all the members, partners and fans of the band!

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Monday, January 26, 2009

Almah: Fragile Equality is one of the best selling records in Brazil

According to a recent research by one of the most important Brazilian heavy metal magazines Roadie Crew (#120, January 2009) Almah's second album Fragile Equality became one of the top-5 best selling CDs in Brazil together with the new albums of AC/DC, Metallica, Motörhead and Guns N’ Roses. In the meantime, Fragile Equality was mentioned as one of the most important releases in 2008 and the best Brazilian album released in 2008 by a few members of Roadie Crew editorial staff. The new Almah album Fragile Equality was released 24th of September in Brazil and Japan (JVC) and 17th of October 2008 in the rest of the world (AFM). Marcelo Barbosa recorded guitars for the album (together with Paulo Schroeber), contributed in composing part and spent the first part of the tour supporting Fragile Equality in November-December 2009.(Thanks Monica Fontes for the news).

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Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Cover Guitarra interview
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Interview with Marcelo Barbosa and Paulo Schroeber (Almah)
Cover Guitarra magazine (November 2008, Brazil)
Author: Regis Tadeu
Photos in the article: Pati Patah
Translation from Portuguese: Irina Ivanova
The original article also includes some explanations about playing different guitar parts of Fragile Equality (Almah).

Marcelo Barbosa is the one of the most respected guitar players in Brazil due to his membership in Khallice band, his work as a columnist of Cover Guitarra magazine and for sure due to his famous musical school, which he established in Brasilia. Berklee graduate and the student of such great masters like Greg Howe, Lula Galvão, Hélio Delmiro, Toninho Horta, Guinga and Ian Guest, now he has done a new step forward in his career joining Almah. This project established by the vocalist of Angra, Edu Falaschi has turned into a real band and has just released its second studio album Fragile Equality.

I was impressed to hear this connection between both of you, especially in such songs like Birds Of Prey and Meaningless World. How did you decide “where everyone of you plays” in each song? Did you do it in some intuitive way or was every harmony analyzed in order to refrain from repetition?

Marcelo: This division came naturally enough, we didn’t have any difficulty concerning that. Intuition, good taste and sensitivity were the factors that guided us to this kind of decision. Rapidly, it had become very clear regarding who had to play and where. In Almah we don’t have a lead guitarist and a second guitarist like many other bands. We both have enough of space and enough of power to make decisions. Although we’ve got to know each other only during the process of the album production, our connection, both musical and personal, occurred quickly. For sure, it affected the music we were playing. Interestingly enough, we had known each other with Paulo for so little time before the recording, but on the last days when we were recording guitar solos Felipe and Edu could listen to my solo in some song thinking that it’s Paulo’s one and on the contrary, listening to Paulo’s solo in the other song could think that this one was mine. Edu was even kidding that we joined together and turned into just one guitar player. I consider it as a compliment. Without this respect and admiration from both sides such result could have never been reached.

Paulo: Despite style differences between us, everything was balanced very well. I believe that Marcelo and me are learning a lot one from another, before and after this CD and it makes our collaboration even more healthy and useful. We have complete understanding of what kind of space each of us can have in every song and it’s divided in a very reasonable way. We have a kind of mutual admiration and respect first of all, the critical factor for collaboration in a band.

How did each of you receive an invitation to join the band? Under what circumstances did it happen?

Marcelo: In my case it was in August 2007. Almah were doing a tour supporting the release of the first CD having in its line-up all members of Angra except Kiko (Loureiro) and Rafael (Bittencourt) but with Edu Ardanuy playing the guitars. Right in the beginning, Edu had to leave because of the tour dates of his main band Dr.Sin. He indicated my name for his replacement, and as far as Angra’s fans had already known me due to Khallice, they decided to call me to join the band. I entered the band in 10 days before the first show with me and we had only two rehearsals. I was puzzled a lot, but I accepted this challenge believing in the great opportunity there. Besides the great challenge, it was also a big responsibility because actually at that moment I was substituting three great national guitar names: Kiko, Rafael and Edu. We finished the tour (15 shows, if I’m not mistaken) in the beginning of November and after some line-up changes in the band in January 2008 Edu, Felipe and me began to work at the pre-production of Fragile Equality.

Paulo: It was necessary to have one more guitarist in the band due to some style changing from the first to the second album. I’ve already been acquainted with Marcelo (Moreira, Almah’s drummer) for some years, and he told Edu Falaschi about me and I passed some test finishing the arrangements of two songs – Meaningless World and Magic Flame. I created some phrases and parts of these songs. It was a marathon because Edu is a real workaholic. I remember us working 15 hours (plus or minus) per day at the songs, having some sleep and then beginning everything again. After being approved by the rest of the band and joined officially, I spent two weeks more doing the final arrangements. Everything at that time was very new for me, everything was happening very quickly, but I became very happy by the fact that after many years my work was recognized by these people, and under such circumstances when the CD should have been ready in a short term.

Another thing that impressed me a lot is the tone of the guitars. When have you got it to this level? How did this search go, allowing you to get a much more rude but “organic” sound in comparison with, for example, Angra?

Marcelo: Before getting to this point, we had a few dead-ends. Some wanted to have a sound more “traditional for heavy metal”. Paulo and me were inclining to try something different which could sound good but wouldn’t necessary be the pattern of sound 90% of the bands use. We wanted to reach some common ground and it gave us the direction. After many conversations we came to some common sense, to a mixture of two distinct sounds of the guitar, which summed up resulting in the sound one can hear on the disc. We would like to do a heavy CD, with the guitar sound powerful and definite, but with its own identity at the same time. I became very happy with the result. The experience Edu and Felipe had as producers helped us a lot, especially with the mixing. After everything was recorded, during the mixing each instrument was brought to the same level as the others, and reaching the balance between these sounds was a real art.

Paulo: We were between traditional sound of Mesa/Boogie and Marshall. We ended up with the option of some hybrid sound because we would like it to sound as much different as possible within the style and, by obvious motives, without similarity with Angra, as far as these comparisons were inevitable. Besides that, among all the possibilities the sound should have given us our proper identity. And that became clear also with the solos, because there every one did simply what he wanted respecting the tone, the taste and the imprint of another one.

How have you been involved in the process of writing all the stuff?

Marcelo: This is a good question. I’m from Brasilia, Paulo and Moreira are from Caxias do Sul, Edu and Felipe are from Sao Paolo, so we arranged our meetings, sometimes in SP, sometimes in Brasilia for composing and pre-production. At the beginning there were only Edu, Felipe and me. Then Moreira entered the band and joined the sessions. Finally, Paulo came in. Though we had already come to the finish line at that time, Paulo became very important for the whole process, because he stepped in with many cool ideas and he greatly helped with finishing some songs and also with the composition of the others. Fairly speaking, I couldn’t refrain from mentioning that Edu had enough useful ideas, but no matter whose name is under which song, all of us were involved in the whole process, at one moment giving our view regarding the arrangements, at another changing a harmony or a guitar riff. The geography of the band members made the whole thing a little bit difficult, but finally it worked and the CD took only six months to be ready. Taking into account everything – composing, arranging, pre-production, recording, mixing and mastering, we can arrive to the conclusion, that no CD has ever been done so quickly. (laughs).

Paulo: I spent two weeks finishing arrangements in Edu’s house. It was when Birds Of Prey song appeared. I remember that Edu came up with the idea of this song recorded on Ipod, he even sang the opening riff, and the chemistry was so strong, so in that way the whole song appeared just in a few hours. I feel very proud to compose the instrumental part in the middle. After some time, already in the studio we increased thirds and divided the solos. The basis of certain songs, like Beyond Tomorrow, was quite simple, and we worked the songs up in accordance with our taste. As far as we were totally free regarding the solos, we tried to use some things not very common for the style and we are really satisfied with the final result.

What were the most important lessons you’ve got during the studio work, concerning the tone and recording of the guitars?

Marcelo: I had already had some good experience of studio work, but not the same like Edu and Felipe had. The most interesting thing was the opportunity to see that there’re various ways for production of something, which can lead to a good result. The methodology they use is quite different from that one I’ve got accustomed to, but I believed in heavy metal experience of these persons and the results were excellent. It wasn’t any revolutionary method of recording and tone. As for me, the main lessons concerned personal point of view and relationships. We spent many days very close to each other in the studio, recording from Monday to Monday, mainly from midday till midnight. We were very tired, but that was worth of it. Regardless of all, I believe that after this recording I became a better guitarist both on my technical level and on the level of producer requirements.

Paulo: The main lesson for me was the amount of distortion that was used during the recording. Today I play with the tone which is quite cleaned up, but which is still as heavy as before. Besides that, although I had already had some studio experience it was not on such a level, because this time everything had to be done perfectly.

Marcelo, what’s the current situation with Khallice? Do you continue as a member of the band or are you going to consider Almah as a priority?

Marcelo: I continue as a member of the band, we should play with Symphony X here in Brasilia (the interview was done in September 2008). Khallice is a project I established still at that time when I was a teenager and it’s very special for me. We released the first CD through Magna Carta, one EP with six songs in the first half of this year and we need some time to finish our second disc, we’re going to release it in the beginning of 2009. But everything depends on the schedule of Almah in the next year. To be honest, now I have to consider Almah as a priority, because there’s no use trying to be everywhere investing time, dedication, money, if you are not able to gather all the harvest. I believe a lot in Fragile Equality, Almah is in a very good period with many cool things, which can happen. The things are going really cool and we feel very good. Thus, now it’s a moment to work up in order to make these things real. We have an excellent product in our hands and we need to work at it, to promote it and that’s exactly what I’m doing now. Thanks God, my partners from Khallice completely understand it. When they were staying together for some days during the recording in Sao Paolo we started the ties of friendship with Almah people. When we meet, it can be in Sao Paolo or in Brasilia, we always have a great party together.

Is Almah a real band with its proper and independent way, solid line-up or is it just a side project of Edu, where all the decisions are made by him?

Marcelo: Almah has turned into a real band. We are living and making the most important decisions in a democratic way in most cases. It’s clear that as far as Edu had already had the contracts with international labels and producers with the first CD, a lot of things were in his hands but we trusted his experience within this market. He always discusses the options and the attitude with everybody. We have an enterprise, No Laço Music, where we all are equal concerning our rights as well as our obligations. We know that it’s not so easy to keep this “equilibrio” – from the name of the album – but our intention is to have something cool in our career for everybody of us five, from artistic and financial points of view. It’s clear because no one lives only by the dreams.

Didn’t you feel some kind of embarrassment working with two musicians with bigger experience from the marketing point of view, like with Edu and Felipe?

Marcelo: I don’t think it might be called as an “embarrassment”. To be honest, I’m very happy with everything that happens in the band and with the fact that I’m there. I keep telling that a band is a marriage of five (in our case) people. It is known that in some moments it’s not easy at all to support healthy relationships just with one person. Imagine how it works between five different heads, which one with its own proper life experience, its proper culture – or the absence of it (laughs) – its proper values, and they have to co-exist at one place, to choose ways, to make decisions, which affect all. Regardless of having Edu and Felipe in the band, there are moments of disagreement, but nothing beyond the stuff that can happen in any other work. The importance of this moment means to put the ego away, to be able to talk, to hear and to have a good feeling for choosing the best way for the band, not for oneself. And still it’s going in this way. I think, the experience we’ve got in other bands helps us to avoid certain mistakes. We are working in the way, which I consider to be the most appropriate.

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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Marcelo Barbosa on Music Expo 2008 (São Paolo)

On the stand of NIG Expo 2008

With Roger Franco and Sydnei Carvalho playing Terror on the stand of NIG EXPO 2008

NIG Youtube channel

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Sunday, January 18, 2009

Marcelo in the new ALMAH video Beyond Tomorrow

Marcelo Barbosa: "I feel very happy to have this clip produced here in Brasília, in my native city. The choice of a place couldn’t be better and due to Rodrigo’s production, now we can enjoy the work of the best quality, which is our basic principle for any work we develop. I believe that launching of a video clip is a great step forward and a real milestone in any artist’s career, especially if it is a matter of such kind of media, which links the band’s sound and image together. A lot of things have been changed during the pre-production due to some natural reasons or even due to changing the opinion of the band members regarding which song to publish as a video. But happily, as usual, everything works as it was expected and our clip is here in order to help us to promote our music to the whole world".

"Estou muito contente de termos produzido este clipe aqui em Brasília que é a minha cidade natal. A locação escolhida não poderia ser melhor e a direção do Rodrigo fez com que pudéssemos desfrutar de um trabalho de altíssima qualidade que é uma premissa nossa para qualquer trabalho que desenvolvemos. Acredito que o lançamento de um vídeo clipe é uma grande passo e um marco na carreira de qualquer artista, principalmente por se tratar de uma midia que "linka" o som da banda com a imagem do mesmo. Muita coisa durante a pré-produção deste material foi mudando por percalços de ordem natural ou até mesmo por mudança de opinião dos integrantes quanto a qual música divulgar em um clipe mas felizmente, como de costume, tudo deu mais certo do que se esperava e o nosso clipe tá aí, pra ajudar a divulgar a nossa música para o mundo todo."

This new Video Clip is a part of the promotion of the new Almah's album FRAGILE EQUALITY. It was filmed 17th of December in Marcelo's homecity Brasília. It was directed by the well-known RODRIGO GIANNETTO who works also for MTV Brazil.

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Sunday, January 11, 2009

KHALLICE in Synergia program (Brazil)

In the recent 17th issue of Synergia program (Brazil) you can see the great documentary of KHALLICE tribute performance to Dream Theater (Images and Words) in Brasília (Brazil) on 21th of November 2008.
The video is available (click) here, it includes short interviews (in Portuguese) and the parts of classical songs like Take The Time, Wait For Sleep and others played by KHALLICE.

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Thursday, January 8, 2009

Marcelo Barbosa for Spirit Of Metal Webzine

Marcelo Barbosa with other members of Almah did the interview for Spirit Of Metal Webzine:

How did you get in touch with Almah, how were your first meeting with the band?
Marcelo Barbosa: I knew the members of Almah for years because my band Khallice played with Angra sometimes. The guitarist that was there before me is a huge friend of mine and he indicated me when he left. I leave in another city, far from São Paulo, where Edu and Felipe lives and Edu gave me a call inviting me to join the group, not only to make the 2007 tour. So, I knew that I was a band member since the invitation...

Which other musical instruments can you play?
Marcelo Barbosa: I play acoustic guitars, bass and try to sing sometimes... LOL

You founded the Institute of Guitar (GTR), can you tell us about it? How did you get such idea of the Institute?
Marcelo Barbosa (guitars): GTR is a project I've worked already for twelve years at. It began like a guitar Institute but now we have classes for bassists, vocalists and acoustic guitar players too. I’m responsible for all the didactic material of the guitar course and we have more then six hundred students in three schools. Four years ago I decided to franchise GTR and some people got interested and now we have three schools in Brasilia. The idea started when I was a teenager. At that time information about it was very difficult to find here in Brazil, and basically, only that people who had money to travel to USA could study music in a school like GIT or Berklee. At that time my family didn’t had the money to send me to USA so I started to wonder about open a music school specialized on the guitar. We hadn’t something like this here at that time and it was something brand new. Of course, it is something adapted to our reality, doing business in Brazil is totally different of it in the USA.

Is this Institute big? What kinds of guitar techniques students study?
Marcelo Barbosa (guitars): It is relatively big. We have many students and it’s growing up year bu year. We try to teach music, not one specific style or genre. Rock, Metal, Jazz, Country and Brazilian music is some of the approaches here. About techniques we deal with as many subjects we can, and each student applies it to his reality.

The complete interview of Spirit Of Metal Webzine with ALMAH band members is available HERE.
Thanks Lucky, thanks Almah France for the link.

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Thursday, January 1, 2009

ALMAH: Marcelo Barbosa + Edu Falaschi interview for Terroraiser mag
(you can click "read more" button to see the complete interview)

Almah interview with Edu Falaschi and Marcelo Barbosa
Terroraiser print magazine (Ukraine), #4-2008 by Thrashmentor,
original text of the interview in English

TERRORAISER: How would you describe the new CD, what do you consider to be the most important musical developments on “Fragile Equality” compared to the debut album (do you know it?). What’s your contribution to the new record and what do you consider to be your personal influence on the new direction of Almah?
Edu Falaschi: I prefer to describe FRAGILE EQUALITY with the words that I heard from many fans and important journalists. “It’s the best power metal album in 2008”, “It can become a reference to the next power metal generation”, “It’s fresh, modern, sophisticated and powerful”. If they say it, who Am I to say the opposite? I just agree!
Marcelo Barbosa: I think the new CD is more consistent, heavy and sophisticated. The first one was composed and arranged basically by Edu, who is a great musician but in FE we have the contribution of each one in the band. Everyone brought his personal musical influence to this work and this is what makes it so special. Moreira is a great melodic/traditional metal drummer, Paulo has that kind of trash’s influence and I’m really connected to progressive and prog metal stuff. This mixture gave personality and uniqueness to the sound.

TERRORAISER: What were the main differences between your approach to the recording of “Fragile Equality” and “Almah” albums? Was it different feeling?
Edu Falaschi: Now it’s a band album, the first one was just my solo project. Now there is a very concentrated energy from 5 guys that tried to make the best metal album as possible.

TERRORAISER: ALMAH started as a project, but now this is a “real” band. What does it mean for you “to be a real band”?
Edu Falaschi: I believe in the power of a united and focused group. The proof is Fragile Equality, this is the real meaning of being a real band. Yeah, it’s important to say that now Almah is a full time band and not a solo project anymore. We want to make more and more records with this line-up that is: EDU FALASCHI, MARCELO BARBOSA, PAULO SCHROEBER, FELIPE ANDREOLI AND MARCELO MOREIRA. Those are the best Brazilian powermetal musicians we have nowadays.

TERRORAISER: How much and what does each member contribute to the new album? Let’s start with you ;))
Edu Falaschi: Everybody was essential to this album. I started with the band, I know, but their knowledge, talent and dedication were very important to get such a fantastic result.

TERRORAISER: How did you get the invitation to join Almah? Did you know these guys before? And what did you felt?
Marcelo Barbosa: Yeah, I knew them from Angra. We played together many times in some gigs that both Angra and Khallice played. Besides this Edu Ardanuy (Dr. Sin) is a big friend of mine and he was playing with Edu Falaschi during the 2007 tour. When he quit for personal reasons he gave my name to Edu and Felipe, and he told me. Edu Falaschi called me himself asking if I wanted to join the group and I had less than two weeks and two rehearsals to get familiar with the set list. It was a big challenge!

TERRORAISER: Would you tell us about your musical background, where did you play before Almah and what will happen with these bands in the future?
Marcelo Barbosa: 've always been a hard worker. I had so many bands and different projects but no one with Almah’s magnitude. I have a prog metal band called Khallice (, I play every week with Zero10, a pop/rock band from my home town. Besides this I’m the owner of a music institute here and I spend a lot of time teaching, and keeping things under control at the institute. For now I’m trying to conciliate everything but, thanks god, it’s not easy. I think it’s possible to continue with everything, but only time will tell.

TERRORAISER: What equipment did you use for the recording?
Marcelo Barbosa: I used my Tagima Signature guitars MB-1 mostly. For some riffs and rhythm sometimes a Carvin equiped with Elixir Strings 0,12 was used too. The sound of this instrument was great but it was so hard to play... my things were falling apart LOL We used a JMP-1 Marshall pre amp connected to a power Mesa Boogie Strategy 500, some pedals and a Marshall 4X12 cabinet.

TERRORAISER: Are you satisfied with the recording process and production of the new CD? How did you feel yourself not only as a singer but also as a producer of the cd? Was it easy to run the whole process?
Edu Falaschi: well, I’m really satisfied in recording and producing such a good and strong album, but It wasn’t easy, we spent 8 mounths doing the whole production. We tried to make the best metal album as we can, I’m sure we got it.

TERRORAISER: Could you explain the lyrical contents of your new album – this is a concept album, isn't it? How is it reflected in the cover artwork?
Edu Falaschi: The concept of the lyrics are based in a book that I’m co-writing. It’s an adventure MANGA book. And the story talks about the balance we need to get in everything in our lives. Everything in the CD is related to some kind of balance.

TERRORAISER: Where did you draw your inspiration for both, for the composing and the lyrics-writing, for "Fragile Equality"?
Edu Falaschi: Inspiration is the key, you can’t explain it. Words is not able to explain where the ideas came from. I just leave the ideas start pumping up. Music is my life. Well I play many instruments I think it helps a bit.

TERRORAISER: Which song(s) on the new CD do you like the most and closer to your heart and why?
Edu Falaschi: I love it all, I see this CD as one whole.

TERRORAISER: Marcelo, what about you?
Marcelo Barbosa: Difficult question... I think it changes from time to time. I’m worried about choosing just one, maybe the others can start to feel sad because they weren’t chosen... LOL. Ok, today I will choose Torn...

TERRORAISER: What was the first song that you wrote for this album?
Edu Falaschi: I don’t remember the first one but the last one was BIRDS OF PREY.

TERRORAISER: The creation of what song did take the longest period of time?
Edu Falaschi: I think it was YOU’LL UNDERSTAND.

TERRORAISER: You have begun to receive the first reviews and other kinds of response. What do you expect from the reviews this time? What’s the first reaction around the globe?
Edu Falaschi: I’m really surprised especially with the reviews and comments around the new almah’s album, some important journalists say that fragile equality can become a reference for the next powermetal generation and that this album is a masterpiece or a jewel or powermetal. That’s cool to hear.

TERRORAISER: Can you tell us a weird or funny story that happened in ALMAH camp, maybe on the road, in the rehearsal room or something like thish?
Marcelo Barbosa: There are some good stories. For me, I remember my debut show with the band. I had been with Almah only for two weeks and Edu Ardanuy who was the guitar player of Almah before me is a very famous here in Brazil. I was at the backstage and I heard the crowd shouting ARDANUY, ARDANUY, ARDANUY!!!!! Nobody knew until that day that he had left and I was afraid of coming on the stage because the crowd was expecting another guy on the guitars... LOL. Luckily, after some songs, Edu introduced me to the public and a few moments later they were like MARCELO, MARCELO, MARCELO!!!!!

TERRORAISER: What do you think about the music of today? Do you really feel that metal is ready to become #1 again?
Edu Falaschi: Metal is becoming more popular again, specially in USA. If it explode there, it goes to everywhere.

TERRORAISER: What’s your opinion about modern Metal scene? Which bands / styles do you especially like, which ones absolutely not?
Marcelo Barbosa: I do like metal very much, but I don’t have much time to follow that much what is happening in the scene. I've always liked some old bands like Led, Deep Purple, Rush, more in metal Metallica, Pantera and things like that. My progressive vein leads me to Dream Theater, Symphony X, Pain of Salvation etc... There are so many special works in every musical field that I don’t feel well choosing just five of them. The fact is that I do like everything made with the heart and the brain (in this order) and I don’t like music that doesn’t touches me when I listen to it. I know this is a very subjective answer, but this is how I feel about this subject.

TERRORAISER: What are your exact plans for the near future? Professionally and personally?
Edu Falaschi: Making Tours, video clip and DVD. Personally many things, but it’s private.

TERRORAISER: The greatest highlight of 2008? (the interview was done in Nov. 2008)
Marcelo Barbosa: I’m sure it didn’t happen yet. But playing our music in some of the most important music festivals in Brazil, for more than 20 thousands people is always amazing.

TERRORAISER: Thank you very much for your answers! Is there anything you would like to add / last words and greetings?
Edu Falaschi: Thanks for all the support and please visit us at:,


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