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Somapala, Chitral "Chity": Sinhabumi

The native Sri Lankan, Chitral "Chity" Somapala, has recorded, toured, and made guest appearances with numerous bands around the world, most interestingly as far as I'm concerned with UK power metal heroes Power Quest – a band he left, as one article suggested because Sompala believes that power metal is as dead as the proverbial dodo. He also appeared on a couple of Firewind albums and is a Mob Rules alumnus – quite a pedigree.

Apparently Chity is known as the founding father of rock and heavy metal in Sri Lanka, and receives a hero's welcome whenever he performs in his home country and Sinhabumi is the first sung in his native tongue. Sinhabumi is engineered by Markus Teske (Red Circuit, Vanden Plas, Symphony X, Udo Dirkschneider, Mob Rules etc.) and the house band is Carsten Enghardt (Vanilla Ninja), Raoul Walton (Marius Müller Westernhagen, Julie Nigel, Roachford, etc), Sebastian Eder (Avalon) and Rakitha Wickramaratne (Naadro).

Sinhabumi is not like any of the power metal bands listed above. It's much more laid back than that, possibly too laid back for its own good with the occasional track souding like bland 1980's Euro pop ("Me Lokaya Ape" being the major culprit here despite the Whitesnake-lite opening guitar riff.) "Diwyalokayen" is a lovely ballad although again it may be too bland for some although the exoticism of the Sri Lankan language may be a winner for others. "Ralu Mawathe" could well be my favourite track as (within reason) it rocks harder than any of the other tunes and is musically more downbeat without being depressing. Sinhabumi is a pleasant, if undemanding album but long term fans may have to work to find the metal edge usually within Sompala's work.

Track Listing:
1 Sinhabumi
2 Me Lokaya Ape
3 Diwyalokayen
4 Ralu Mawathe
5 Miringuwa Parada
6 Sithuwili Pura
7 Sihinaya Pupura Yai
8 Nadee Ganga

Added: December 15th 2014
Reviewer: Simon Bray
Related Link: Artist Website
Hits: 1773
Language: english

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