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Bang Your Head - 93%

MasterTherion, June 25th, 2011

Dream Evil (as their name might suggest) has spent most of their career attempting to capture the magic of Dio-era heavy metal. Although most of their older work falls flat in many areas, their latest album has finally captured exactly what the band has always tried to, for better or for worse (but mostly for the better).

The guitars here are powerful, catchy, and keep perfectly in time with the drumming, which is just as loaded with energy. The general composition of the songs is ridiculously simple, but it works perfectly with the band's theme. You don't really need to use your brain to enjoy this album, but in all honesty, it's really kind of refreshing to be able to listen to some brainless metal every once in a while.

The album's lyrical themes seem reminiscent of 80's heavy metal, and mostly have to do with battles, love, and rocking out while banging your head. Once again, you're not really going to have to use your brain to comprehend these lyrics, but who listens to Dream Evil for original lyrics or philosophical insight? No, this is brainless 80's ripoff metal all the way, and much better because of it.

"Bang Your Head" is easily the best song here, with a catchy chorus that actually does make you want to bang your head. The album's only moment of imperfection is "The Ballad", which seems less like a fun tribute to early heavy metal and more like a moldy ball ball of musical cheese. Of course, Dream Evil releasing an album with only one fuck-up song is unheard of, and even this fuck-up is unnoticeable with a quick jab at the "skip song" button.

Dream Evil isn't doing anything progressive or original here, and some metalheads will find the blatant ripoff of 70's and 80's heavy metal to be cheesy or unoriginal. However, copying classic heavy metal is exactly what they're trying to do, and in all honesty, they're doing a damned good job. The band had as much fun recording this album as you will listening to it, and anyone who says otherwise needs to get that stick out of their ass. This album is cheesy, but it's also powerful, catchy, and a hell of a lot of fun.

Musically formidable, lyrically painful. - 64%

hells_unicorn, March 16th, 2011

One has to lower oneself in order to truly get where Dream Evil comes from, not merely in creative expectation, but also in freshness if the last few albums have anything to say on the subject. Any apologist who tries to justify the continued existence of their brand of cliché, metal worshiping power/heavy Metal run into a liability the minute their name comes up. While musically they’ve always been competent at getting the job done, the image, the words, and the overall concept just doesn’t wash. While one could point to their stellar production practices and competent front man, when compared with Hammerfall or Metalium, let alone the colossal founder of the style Manowar, there is a lot to be desired.

After losing two highly credible musicians in Snowy Shaw and Gus G, nearly breaking up completely, and a middle of the road album in “United”, 4 years of studio silence has further given us all a chance to cool off from the excess goofiness. But unfortunately this wasn’t long enough in the case of “In The Night”, which seems hell bent on trying to out tongue-in-cheek “The Book Of Heavy Metal”. From a stylistic standpoint, this is actually a pretty solid bit of Judas Priest worship that sees Nick Night actually sounding like a slightly more nasal version of Ralf Scheepers, and the simple songwriting is almost akin to a stripped down version of “Devil’s Ground”. But when it comes to how this is all presented, particularly from a lyrical standpoint, this is the sort of album that all but cries out from a mountaintop that it wants to sound like it was written over a weekend.

From song to song, there is actually a strong level of continuity and a good sense of brevity. Most have limited and basic content, and primarily fly by the strength of the vocalist and the punch of the whole arrangement. A nice smattering of up-tempo rockers with distinctive melodic content and lyrical clichés are pervasive, as particularly is the case with “Immortal”, “On The Wind” and the shred happy “See The Light” which sees new guitarist Dannee Demon attempting to invoke Gus G’s wild sweeping style with adequate results, though no substitute for the original. The afterburners get turned on a bit with the title song “In The Night”, which really lays on the “Painkiller” influences. But the best representative in congress is the closing “The Unchosen One”, which sounds like a reinterpretation of “Children Of The Night” with a more Halford-infused vocal assault.

Unfortunately, with most of the better songs on here even, one would have to sing along without even given the slightest bit of credence to the words. At best, what is heard is 3rd rate rehashes of the “We play metal, look how badass we are!!!” stuff that Manowar brought to the equation as far back as 1982, and they at least had the biceps to back it up. At worst, it sounds like a horrid fit of self-parody such as is the case with the awkward quiet slump otherwise known as “The Ballad”, which is lyrically idiotic enough to paint a picture of Spinal Tap with members of Nanowar’s craniums immersed in their rectal regions. But even if this song wasn’t preoccupied with booze, buffoonery and “that fucking Snowy Shaw”, the radically derivative and shallow music presentation would sink this thing instantly and brand it as a weekend songwriting flop meets a bad version of an Elton John song.

Fodder for the bargain bin is what we are ultimately dealing with here, and even at $7 this should be approached with an imaginary warning label of potential death by cheese poisoning. I’ve been able to enjoy this album primarily by employing the skip button on a few songs and bearing in mind that this is about as far removed from a lyrically deep album as can be encountered. But for those who liked either “The Book Of Heavy Metal” or “Dragonslayer”, or someone just looking for something that sounds 80s to the point of trying to relive it minus the loud production, this is not beyond worthiness of acquiring.

Originally submitted to (www.metal-observer.com) on March 16, 2011.

We Rule The Slaughter! - 90%

kmorg, April 11th, 2010

Dream Evil has grown to be one of the mainstays of Swedish heavy metal. Here they are with their 5th full studio album, named 'In The Night'. With a new guitarist, and new pseudonyms the band is back with a full-on humorous metal effort this time around.

Dream Evil has always been a band that takes it all over-the-top. And this time around they have taken it even further, both musically and image wise. All of the members are now operating under outrageous names. And the lyrics are so out there that the word cliché is no longer applicable. Just check out this line from the opening song, "Immortal": We are immortal, we rule the slaughter", or how's this for a sappy lyric in a song called "The Ballad": We believe in lots of love...., we believe in drinking beers and booze and wine,... we believe in of love, we believe in drinking booze and act like swine, when the children cry"!! They have also used the title of the album as a text phrase in almost all of the songs on the album. So you have to have a sense of humor when it comes to this band, and realize that this is entertaining as heck!

Lyrics aside though, Dream Evil has also always delivered classy melodic power metal. And 'In The Night' is no exception. These are some ultra catchy melodies here, driven by powerful and punching guitar work, and smooth vocal acrobatic. Songs like "Immortal", "Bang Your Head" and "Kill, Burn, Be Evil" are not only metal hymns, they are also hymns to metal, and the metal life. Everything I loved with the bands prior work is still in tact, and I actually feel that Dream Evil has delivered one of their strongest effort this time around. Sure, they are balancing on a fine line with their tongue-in-cheek approach. But you'll be hard pressed to find anyone who claims to like the genre who'll say anything really bad about this album. And if you can sit through "The Unchosen One" without banging your head, stompin' your feet or throw your fist in the air, chances are you ain't a metalhead after all! Yes, this is darn catchy, and well done melodic metal! So when every song is as strong as the next, I can only conclude that Dream Evil has once again delivered a strong album to their fans.

The limited edition digibook comes with 2 bonus tracks, and a killer patch for your denim vest. m/

Killer tracks: Immortal, In The Night, See The Light, The Ballad, In The Fires Of The Sun, The Unchosen One

from http://www.metal-metropolis.com/dream_evil.htm

Running in place. - 60%

Empyreal, March 14th, 2010

Ah, Dream Evil, proof that you don’t have to have any artistic integrity or change a damn thing about your sound at all to get a record contract and release music and be a generally famous metal band worldwide. But goddamn if they aren’t entertaining as fuck anyway. This is In the Night, almost a decade after formation and their fifth album into their career, and how does it fare up? Eh, it’s about what you’d expect.

The most astonishing thing about this is just how much fun it is at times even in the context of being shallow and artistically bereft candy metal. I mean…this is just silly all around. It’s a Power Metal album released in 2010 still holding onto clichés like album title In the Night and song titles like “See the Light” and “Immortal.” That either takes a huge amount of balls to not feel like you’re doing something redundant or a complete disregard for every outside influence that could ever possibly inflict itself upon you. They obviously didn’t spend more than ten minutes tops writing these lyrics and picking song titles, which would be horribly asinine if the album weren’t still so much fun. Good god, they even used the rhyme “They come to take my life/They come to take my wife”! This…this is just stupid, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to say I don’t like it anyway.

I am serious. Even despite the fact that I’ve been listening to this band for half a decade now, songs like the epic “Immortal,” the heavy, booming title track, the melodic firestorm of “See the Light,” the crunchy “Frostbite” and the blazing “Kill, Burn, Be Evil” are still hugely entertaining to me. The whole first half of this is damn good, with big riffs and renewed energy and charismatic vocals galore. Without Gus G., the band seems to be having a lot more fun, and the energy just goes through the roof on every single track. We do hit a serious dead zone in the form of the terrible “The Ballad” – about as funny as a stubbed toe. What’s the point of taking the piss out of conventional stereotypes like this when they could have just as easily AVOIDED that and released an album with no ballad at all? “Mean Machine” sucks too, with a really lame chorus, but luckily that’s about as far as this album dips in quality.

I probably shouldn’t be going so easy on this album, as I doubt the band was even really trying past the point of just writing the hooks, and there are tons of bands that are putting forth ten times more effort and getting ten times less recognition in the underground. But goddammit, this album is still too catchy and too much fun to ignore. Dream Evil is only about one step above a joke band, but at least they are an enjoyable farce, at that. Recommended if you can’t get enough of this chorus-and-riff bare bones heavy metal. Cheeky fuckers.

Originally written for http://www.metalcrypt.com

Heavy Metal chapter II - 100%

Kalelfromkrypton, March 9th, 2010

The reviews I have read so far for this magnificent album focus on the ‘comparison fact’ with D.E past albums. It is true it is inevitable comparing albums and especially (which can be both a course and a blessing) when such past albums were anthemic killer heavy metal records.

Well my fellow metal heads, I am taking the side of a newbie. ‘In the night’ was the first album I actually purchased. I must confess I was reluctant in regards to true metal because of the generic sound I have found so far. Pretty much it goes next to power metal. It takes really long to find a good band or at least something that stands out and/or provides you real entertainment through the entire listening experience. I have found this with Dream Evil. This album ‘In the night’ upon the very first listening I was blown away. Up to today I still consider it an outstanding album for many reasons, which I will detail right now.

First and foremost I will not compare this album to previous albums. I am reviewing as standalone album. Secondly: the most important thing for a heavy metal album should be: entertainment. Certainly they know how to keep you interested through the entire album. There are fast tracks, mid pace tracks, only one ballad, really ‘epic’ true metal sound based on heavy metal 80’s influences. Anthem songs are as well present. I say this because nowadays if there is something truly difficult to achieve is creating ‘catchy’ tunes (btw I am not saying commercial alright?). I mean, when listening to Stratovarius or Edguy they master this wonderful. They are yet able to create melodies and choruses that will stick to your mind for long. Dream Evil has achieved this to me. Since there are a lot of songs on this album you will find yourself whispering, whistling long after the first or second spin.

Third: what if the lyrical content is for some people cheesy? Half of the metal community states that the lyrics are not important and that when it comes to reviewing albums it is supposed to be focused on the music alone. Now when it comes to true metal then a lot of people state that the lyrics are cheesy, silly, lollipop for kids, etc etc. Thus we are forgetting what the genres stand for. True metal was supposed to exalt metalians around the world. This is cheesy by itself but we need to stand up and defend our likes in music, especially since the mainstream is overcrowded with nothing but shit: saying over produced stupid pop (Britney Spears), alternative rock (90’s utter acoustic crap), bullshit media divas (J.Lo), lifeless & talentless rock bands (Maroon 5, etc) so we need to be united and raise the banner of metal. Does it still sound cheesy to you? Probably yes, but it is indeed true.

Forth: when you listen to a singer that most of the times sounds like Klaus Maine but the screams are very Halford-esque then we have an awesome singer. He is not one of those high pitched Kiske clones. No, he is one o fthe driving forces of the band and although his voice can be compared the style of music creates a totally different sound for this band. Where else, should I dare to say, would you find a band let’s say: Scorpions with huge balls plus Rob Halford invited? Nowhere else but with these guys you will find such.

Fifth: it is really hard and heart breaking when an awesome guitar player leaves a band. This is the case with Gus G. but even so, new comer Daniel does a great job providing quite heavy riffs and especially a crushing guitar crunch plus cool guitar solos. I am not comparing him just in case. I am saying that for a newcomer to the band like me this is a truly killer album regardless of what we they have done in the past. You don’t need warp speed rhythm sections all the way through to keep you interested but even so, if you are the like go and listen to Dragon Force or Dark Angel’s Darkness Descends but being heavy and powerful without the speed (saying not light as the Strato guys or even Skylark), then you have something to think of.

Sixth: the excellent production. As far as I am concerned taking advantage of technology is not bad at all. Mixing albums correctly could become a difficult task and it is easy to screw up a good recording (‘…And justice for all’ by any chance? LOL!) so there are no good songs if the production will not help. In this case Fredrik N. is not an amateur so he did an awesome job providing a really thick sound. It does sound heavy metal, not power metal or any other. This is straight heavy metal the way it is meant to be.

I have not been even detailing the songs since there is no need. The album has it all as explained before. But even so and to be fair with those who need proof of what I am saying is not pure cheap talk let’s just say that ‘Inmortal’ opens and this is the kind of monster that you want to start head banging. The guitar crunch is delicious, vicious, evil (pun intended) and the double bass drums are very well balanced. They are not too fast or weak by any means plus the outstanding vocals of this awesome singer Nick. The party follows with the title track which chorus is although simple very effective. In here the rhythm sections are the most powerful parts of the song plus again the stand out vocals. So on and so forth the songs follow basically the same pattern: powerful riffs, tight drumming sections, superb vocals, and good guitar solos with nice mid tempo (the majority) of songs which enhance the epic and crushing atmosphere of the entire album. Perhaps the only complaint I have which does not take away any points as far as I am concerned is that for the guitar solos they sometimes sound a little back comparing them to the otherwise powerful rhythm guitars. This only happens when the guitar solos come up. But if you take for example the track ‘See the light’ which is my favorite because of the catchiness of the vocal melodies and flowing riff plus the guitar solo fills since the very beginning which sound magnificent to me. Next we have ‘Electric’ which is pure 80’s delight because of the obvious jazzy rock ‘n roll influence. Curiously, the heavier tracks are in the beginning whereas the faster tracks are in the middle providing a good album structure.

Do I need to say more? Let me think, I don’t think so. I believe I have described for any newbie what the band is about. Perhaps for someone who has been following the band this might be an average album with some filler tracks. As for me who just met them this is killer and pure entertainment. The way heavy metal is supposed to be played with balls and fun. Get it! I was not disappointed at all and I am actually trying to get the rest of their catalogue. Guys, keep recording I keep buying!

Dream Evil - In the night - 75%

Radagast, March 1st, 2010

You must know where you stand with Dream Evil by now, and their 5th CD, ‘In the night’ isn’t going to do anything to sway your view of them one way or the other. Fans of their brazenly silly take on heavy metal should gather with interest, while those of a more humourless disposition ought to run for cover.

It has taken them a while, but the 3-1/2 year wait for this CD – the longest ever between Dream Evil releases - after the excellent comeback-of-sorts ‘United’ has shown no serious visible effects on their way of doing things, and ‘In the night’ is another strong collection of songs that cover all the expected stopping points the band have established so far.

This general slowing down over the last few years – even if the rather tidy live/rarities compilation ‘Gold medal in metal’ no doubt took a bit of work to put together – maybe highlights the differences in priorities that saw Snowy Shaw depart back in 2006 (going from 3 CDs from 2002-2004 and only 2 in the 6 years since), but good things come to those who wait, and if patience is needed to keep the core of this band together then that’s the way it will have to be.

Stylistically, ‘In the night’ is probably closest to ‘Evilized’ (my personal favourite Dream Evil CD) in the sense that it has a little more variety in style than the others, and that it also is sometimes possessed of a slightly heavier, darker feel than its 2 immediate predecessors. Slightly less inclined towards the more epic songs found on ‘United’, there are a few more of a more straight-up, pounding persuasion, built on meaner riffs, such as the excellent “Frostbite”. Of particular note on this song is the solo, which is a really memorable bit of neo-classical widdling, which more than makes up for a slightly abortive chorus.

Unfortunately Mark Black, the guy who stepped into Gus G’s not inconsiderable shoes, is gone after only one recording and has been replaced with Daniel Varghamne. I’m not sure where Dream Evil keep finding these extraordinary lead guitarists, but here’s hoping they manage to hold onto this one as surely they can’t keep unearthing these unheard-of gems forever.

Needless to say, he makes a massive contribution to the CD’s successes, starting with an immediate impression on the opener “Immortal” with a stunning, doubled-up solo. Niklas Isfeldt really re-affirms himself on this song too with a commanding vocal performance, not least when he goes it alone for a brief a cappella rendition of the chorus at the conclusion. This combination of powerful, distinctive vocals and colourful lead guitar have always been among the band’s best attributes and they play to their strengths whenever they can. The other members all play their usual rock-solid roles in providing rhythm, with Patrik Jerksten continuing to impress behind the kit with his flashy fills providing moments of character in place of flat predictability.

Similar scorchers to “Frostbite” include “In the fires of the sun” and “On the wind”, which rage with an increased sense of intensity, while “Kill, burn, be evil” is a bit more familiar-sounding, a fist-pumping anthem with a massive gang vocal chorus.

Sadly, despite all its strong moments, there are also some weak points that are actually among the worst efforts the band have made to date. The filter-effect intro to “Electric” doesn’t exactly start it on a promising note, and while it eventually gets going at the chorus, the sputtering guitar playing on the verses lacks any fluidity and adds up to a real misfire.

Ballads have never been this band’s strong point, with Snowy Shaw and Gus G the only members to be any good at writing them, so it’s maybe understandable that they’ve decided to finally just go for an outright piss-take with the lyrics this time around. Such an obligatory thing to include that they’ve just gone ahead and called it “The ballad”, the music is pretty tired and by-the-numbers. The lyrics offer an occasional snicker but it is too broad an effort at humour even for this lot, and it genuinely feels like Isfeldt is just making it up as he goes along. If they were really going through the motions as much as they seem to be blatantly admitting here then they’d really have been as well scrapping the song altogether in favour of something more wholehearted.

Highlights are far more frequent than these pitfalls though, and in “See the light” they have come up with easily one of their best ever songs. Characterised by some killer 80s melodies and bursting with energy, it is capped by a truly superior chorus and another stunning bit of shredding from Varghamne, and stands out as the CD’s clear highlight. They also throw the fans of their slightly more power metal-ish early work a bone with the bonus track “The return” which, even ignoring the self-referential dragon-themed lyrics, reintroduces some of the Hammerfall gallop of their debut CD and makes shelling out the extra cash for the special edition version worth considering.

‘In the night’ may lack some of the consistency of past efforts and as result doesn’t quite match up to Dream Evil’s best work, but there are so many individually impressive moments that it really doesn’t matter. Equally resolute in their contrasting philosophies of no compromise and laid-back humour, they remain purveyors of heavy metal in one of its purest forms, and for that alone there is reason to be grateful; long may it continue.

(Originally written for http://www.metalcdratings.com/)

Hail metal...in the night! - 80%

Nightrunner, February 11th, 2010

The not-too-bloody-serious Heavy Metal warriors from Sweden, Dream Evil is finally back with a new album, new guitarist and some new classic rockanthems. There is no real reason to worry when it comes to this band, they have found their style and I have a hard time to see that they will ever change it. We who know the band from before know this style. Wide-legged, simple, yet energic Heavy Metal with big choirs to get the crowd raise their fists and yell. This combined with some softer and more melodic tunes here and there...as usual! On top of it all we have the great singer Niklas Isfeldt, delivering ultra-cheesy lyrics dealing with the subjects steel and fire in the night of metal, always with a gleam in the eye.

The album is once again produced by the band’s guitarist and well-known producer, Fredrik Nordström. And let me tell you that the sound is fat and punchy, may be the best production of any DE-album so far. Niklas does a great performance as usual with the vocals, and is starting to sound a lot like Ralf Scheepers (Primal Fear) in the tone nowadays, and even does give some fantastic Halford-like screams in the chorus of “Bang Your Head”. His voice lay perfect in the mix, and the big background choirs does also sound very good. The good production does of course make the album very pleasant to listen to.

What about the songs then? Unfortunately, the album is quite inconsistent. So everything isn’t great with the release, obviously. The album starts out neat however, with 3 awesome songs, and 2 good songs. “In The Night”, “Bang Your Head” and “Electric” does all deliver solid, classic Heavy Metal with no intentions to be technical or bandmembers overplaying – just simple metal that you can’t avoid to rock to and play the airguitar to. Album-opener “Immortal” is also a nice and heavy one, but lacks good chorus. “See The Light” is a softer and more melodic track, but has some catchy melodies and riffs. But from the fifth track, the album starts descending down the spiral a bit and loses the quality somewhat. Towards the end, 2 heavy songs return in the galloping “Mean Machine” and “Kill, Burn, Be Evil” with it’s great shout-along chorus. The album ender “The Unchosen Ones” doesn’t really work for my taste. An obvious follower of the debutalbum’s “The Chosen Ones”. Well, that song is way better. A quite ridiculous chorus destroys the song totally. It has some entertaining lyrics, though. They come in their right costumes when playing the a bit heavier stuff, and so it has always been.

The general feeling of “In The Night” is that it’s a solid piece of work, but not fantastic, and asbsolutely not bad. Dream Evil seem to aim at the glory 80’s days, the classic metal that was alive then, and they do absolutely succeed with it to a certain amount. So, if that is what you’re looking for, you won’t be disappointed with this album. It’s easily a shake-up compared with their last album “United”. Remember as I said, that the lyrics are silly at most times, but the band is 100% aware of that, compared with bands that actually are serious with these kind of lyrics. But don’t mind the lyrics too much, and just have fun and rock. That’s the best way to make use of the album.


3 best songs: “In The Night” - “Bang Your Head” - “Electric”

Like a comedy gig that noone laughed at - 67%

autothrall, January 27th, 2010

When it comes to a band like Sweden's Dream Evil, I've always been of two minds. The first mind is that they play a pretty fair quality brand of power metal, with a loud and proud polish, talented musicians, decent vocals, and a wealth of experience which helps translate their old school intentions into the modern world. The second mind is that they are another band who are almost entirely void in the creative department. That is to say, they are simply content with re-hashing the same old stupidity that might have felt novel in about 1983, but seems reluctant and redundant by the 21st century. I mean, just how many songs can we have out there with the titles "Bang Your Head", "Mean Machine", "In the Night", and "See the Light"?

I understand the band's disposition towards glorifying and reliving the good old past of heavy metal, but for Christ's sake, put a little time and effort into more than just the music for once. I may have given the band a by for Dragonslayer or Evilized, since the idea seemed a little fresher at the dawn of the century, but by now it's just tired, and all the HammerFalls and Dream Evils of the world could do a lot by simply upping the ante in their lyrical development. So by now you can tell the absolute dregs of this album are the lyrics, many of which are atrocious tributes to the very style of music they play, and not even in a clever or sarcastic or funny way like some other bands do (for example, the Armour debut, or the over the top absurdity of Abigail or Metalucifer, which is so insane that it cycles through shit into diamond).

'Just like lightning strikes a fire IN THE NIGHT.
Metal is the only way
The devil's sign confirms you're ready for the fight
Built to last and here to stay. It's electric!'

For one thing, you do not worship the devil. For another, WE GET IT. You are playing heavy metal music. Fight and kill for metal because the stereotype of metalheads being a bunch of sodden, beer-swilling jackoffs with an IQ of 12 is the one we REALLY want to last forever! Seriously, there is tongue in cheek, and then there is foot and mouth, and Dream Evil are wasting a fine pair of boots here to massage their tonsils with these awful lyrics. Now, I should be fair here and admit that not all the writing is quite so lame. That isn't to say the lyrics are ever good, but they often focus on other generic elements like wind and power and skies and the remainder of the power metal drivel we've all heard a thousand times.

'Sometimes we get tired
Ohh...of being metal stars
Sometimes we get hired
To play on Jupiter and Mars'

Yes, those are actual lyrics...from a track called "The Ballad", which I suppose was titled for a sense of the profound. That is the level of humor we're working with...

Having already given myself a stroke over the lyrical content, I'm now going to admit that musically, the band is just as explosive and energetic as their debut, and quite talented at crafting simple riffs and blinding, melodic leads that will certain grasp your attention. The band still features three of its original members: Fredrik Nordström, Peter Stålfors and of course Niklas Isfeldt, whose clear and cutting vocals have truly become the mainstay for this band. His performance here is top shelf. You've got a few of the more thundering tracks here ala "Immortal", "Frostbite", "Mean Machine" and the raucous "Kill, Burn, Be Evil", which all have their moments in the spotlight, rocking fierce and hard even despite the derivative riffing which dominates them. "On the Wind" has a great melodic hook, like a Maiden with a lot of crunch, and reminiscent of older Dream Evil 'classics' like "Children of the Night". But of all the tracks here, it was probably "In the Fire of the Sun" that had me rocking the hardest, laid back and melodic but hard hitting like something Riot might have written.

I can only imagine what the results might be if Dream Evil ever got off their duffs and composed some great lyrics, maybe even a concept album about something other than heavy metal itself... Their musical delivery is 100% professional, accessible and could earn them airplay just about anywhere that hard rock and metal still survive, and the songs are generally somewhat catchy. But, no matter what their intentions (and I am sure they are probably innocent), the lyrics here are simply awkward and embarassing, and represent only the dumbing down of an artform with few limits when properly applied. I'm all for having some cheese with my crackers (see my Metalucifer reference above), but replace that cheese with manure and they become a lot more difficult to digest, or even desire to begin with.

Highlights: In the Fire of the Sun, Frostbite, Immortal

-autothrall
http://www.fromthedustreturned.com