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Review: Mägo de Oz - Gaia III: Atlantia
Mägo de Oz
Gaia III: Atlantia

Label: Warner Music Spain
Year released: 2010
Duration: 94:38
Tracks: 16
Genre: Folk Metal

Rating: 3.5/5

Review online: May 20, 2010
Reviewed by: Hermer Arroyo
Readers Rating
Gaia III: Atlantia

Rated 3.38/5 (67.5%) (8 Votes)

Finally, five years after the second installment and with one album in between, Mägo de Oz are back with the final chapter in Gaia III: Atlantia. I was hyped up for this album, as I liked their previous two a lot, so I was hoping for similar quality. As expected, this has common traits with the previous two parts but much more with the second chapter. Both Gaia II and III are double albums that have similar track numbers, order, length and even types of songs. Unfortunately, that rarely works and the more I listened to Gaia III, the more I felt like it was an imitation of the second part.

That doesn't mean the album was a cheap copy, there are certainly good songs and many aspects will please the longtime Mägo de Oz fan. Sound-wise, everything that I expected from this band is present here: catchy choruses, tight musicianship, lots of instruments and guest artists, mix of metal and hard rock, and a moral message that the band tries to send. Speaking of which, the band is more pro-environment rather than the usual attacks against organized religion. That leads to the severe problem of over-preaching, it seems that the band can't get away from giving psalms in their intros or at the end of their songs. That was clear in the epic title track in which the last two minutes almost ruin what is the record's best song.

There are some killer tracks here like: "Dies Irae", "Für Immer", "Atlantia" and "Aún Amanece Gratis" but those are few in a double album. Inconsistent songwriting rears its head many times, the bland instrumental "Fuerza y Honor", "La Soga del Muerto (Ayahuasca)" and most of its ballads are prime examples of that. The problems don't end here, as always the band uses a lot of guest singers but when they use the female vocals they sound out of place. Not only that, but the amazing vocals of José Andrea aren't highlighted enough. However the album's main problem still is that it is very derivative from their other works. Also there is too much material (especially fillers) here. I truly feel that if this would have been a single album it would have done wonders for it.

As it stands, I got to say that this is a bit of a letdown. In Gaia III: Atlantia, Mägo de Oz lean more in a commercial direction than in the past. Normally that would be a definite minus but for this band I think that's ok. Being a double album I do not recommend this to people who know nothing about the band, but for the longtime fan it could be a treat.

Other related information on the site
Review: Finisterra (reviewed by Hermer Arroyo)
Review: Gaia (reviewed by Hermer Arroyo)
Review: Gaia II:La Voz Dormida (reviewed by Hermer Arroyo)
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