CALVARIO (Ixoye) CD
If you belong to those kind of people with a huge preference for forgotten and obscure epic, doomy, metal bands than Brazil's CAVARIO could be of interest for you. Formed in 1992, 'Ixoye' was the band's only record and was originally released in 1994 via Aqualung. The first thing you notice is that 'Ixoye' could date from 1982 due to the production. Also, there are noticeable similarities to early Trouble, Judas Priest and Nemesis, although a direct comparison shows CALVARIO's lack of technical capabilities. They are rather a garage-y version, but nevertheless there a couple of good tracks on this album. Guitarist Areu Iommy in particular is the one who ensures that 'Ixoye' is worth listening to. Some of my favorites are 'Bosques em Coma', a strong semi-ballad that evokes the late-1970's Black Sabbath era, and the driving up-tempo song 'Herdeiros do Reino'. However you should have no problem with insanely high-pitched vocals or I swear to you that you'll push the stop button on your player after only two minutes.
Sandro Demaria's vocals are definitely the reason why it was not exactly easy for me to write this review, because I'm really not fond of a singer that sounds as if someone squeezes his balls. So it is all the more surprising that Demaria changed his style for the better on the three bonus cuts, which have been recorded in 2009. Fortunately, the sound quality is far better and I must acknowledge that CALVARIO is still a band to be reckoned with. Despite the improvement of their sound, 'Ixoye' is an album that only seldom will makes its way into my CD player due to the bizarre vocals. Sometimes CALVARIO are bearable for me, but most of the time I do not know whether to laugh or cry. Notwithstanding this, 'Ixoye' will certainly manage to interest headbangers and collectors of almost forgotten heavy metal bands. This obscure album has been rediscovered and re-released by Blood & Iron Records, including three new bonus songs, liner notes (unfortunately written in Portuguese) as well as an additional video clip.