|Review: Nightmare - Insurrection|
Label: AFM Records
Year released: 2009
Genre: Heavy Metal
Review online: September 13, 2009
Reviewed by: Christopher Foley
Rated 4.35/5 (86.96%) (23 Votes)
I didn't expect this one. The last I'd heard from France's Nightmare was the interesting yet flawed Silent Room, and of course these guys have been slugging it since the 80's, achieving minor recognition from support slots. In 2009 these guys are boasting a sound much different from Silent Room, adding furious drum work, a diverse range of vocals, and some flat-out immense lead guitar work and riffage. Much like the result of an episode of "Pimp My Ride" Nightmare are sporting some flashy new parts, making it hard to distinguish that this is the same act who released Silent Room. My label of Heavy Metal was hard to attach, boasting big Power and Thrash influences – it's a case of too Power to be Thrash and vice versa. Throughout they maintain a solid heavy sound; a foot in the modern door and the other kicking it with the traditional. Vocalist Joe Amore stands out largely here with his equal parts mix of Rob Halford, Andy. B. Franck, and Tim Aymar-styled vocals; ripping and roaring throughout, cutting deep with his demonic high register. Guitarists J.C. Jess and Franck Milleliri have considerably stepped their game up here, seriously their lead work tears and their riffs are cool as hell, reminding me a lot of Brainstorm and that riff 1:23 into Priest's "Painkiller". Their capability to writ soaring melodic licks is nothing to be sniffed at either.
Opening up we have the slow burning "Eternal Morning" striking a similar chord to that of Symphorce's "Speak My Mind" – the main riff is fantastic with a really big sound. The shit gets real when we're treated to "The Gospel of Judas" with a menacing lead riff and some slight Nevermore moments. The title track is another ass kicker with furious vocal work – the pre-chorus guitar riff is ridiculously bad-ass with a mean Thrash feel to it. The first seven tracks on the album are all stellar, be it the Power Metal brilliance of "Legions of the Rising Sun" or the foot stomping madness of "Decameron". A special mention goes out to the epic "Three Miles Island" an almost Iced Earth-like intro that rises into the most visceral display of headbanging fun on this album, a killer riff made apocalyptic due to massive double-kicking and symbol smashing – seriously I skipped back to this part numerous times during my first play through. "Target For Revenge" is a decent semi-ballad that shows singer Joe Amore stretching out some of his softer side. This stands out as my least favorite on the release, these guys work just fine tearing things apart. Album closer "Angels of Glass" opens up with a fantastic guitar intro reminiscent of Iron Maiden. "Angels of Glass" reclaims the magic of the first seven tracks, brilliant vocal work and nicely melodic – a little different to everything else on offer but a suitable album closer and altogether fantastic.
Overall I was surprised by how good this release is. This was something I probably wouldn't have checked out had I not been reviewing it – boy am I glad I got this. I urge you not to make the mistake I could have made and check this out. Fans of acts such as Brainstorm, Bloodbound, Eidolon and Sanctuary would do well to have a look in.
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