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Dream Evil was my favorite power metal band back in 2002 when they released their debut Dragonslayer. They used to be an heavy/power metal type band wiho would differentiate itself from other such bands by their impeccable musicianship and especially their vocalist Niklas Isfeldt who would sing much lower than most power metal vocalists (read: Hammerfall's, Blind Guardian's, Stratovarius', etc.) Their sound evolved into an heavier form with Evilized and pursued a similar direction with The Book of Heavy Metal.
The title is not lying, this album is real heavy metal, the underlying powerish side of the band resurfacing only in the few ballads. Other anthems like 'Let's Make Rock' and 'The Sledge' go all out worshipping classic 80's heavy metal. What is there else to say? They stick to the tried and true formula and dish out some solid songs album after album. Accomplished drummer Snowy Shaw keeps it interesting (especially in 'No Way'), guitarist and producer Nordstrom knows how to make every instrument sound clear and this is how this kind of music sounds best. Gus G rips out some interesting solos. He may be the only young member of the band but he sure sounds as experiences as the rest.
So while this band really impresses me with the quality of the guitars and drumming, I'm a little disappointed that Isfeldt is singing higher than in the previous albums in the Book (though he keeps it varied - he has a nice range), and it doesn't look like the band has someone with a talent for writjng lyrics - they're as cheesy as ever. Not necessarily in a bad way though as Dream Evil are obviously not taking themselves seriously and are just about playing solid classic heavy metal like very few bands play anymore today. They're not better than Priest or Maiden or Jag Panzer on Ample Destruction, but it's always nice to hear a fresh new band playing heavy metal like it should be played.
Overall, this loses points for having so many ballads but this just means there's room for improvement and as long as Dream Evil churns out some of these solid riffs and melodies they can count on my support. I wouldn't say that the Book is an essential of its genre but it's an album that anyone who likes classic and power metal should get - I don't see anyone being disappointed.