Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2019
Encyclopaedia Metallum

Best viewed
without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
or higher.

Privacy Policy

Nightmare flex their muscles on this new album - 75%

TrooperOfSteel, June 28th, 2015
Written based on this version: 2012, CD, AFM Records

French melodic power metal band Nightmare was created way back in 1979 and 33 years later (including a 12 year hiatus from 1987 to 1999) the band is still going strong and producing some great metal music. After all those years, still 2 original members remain - bassist Yves Campion and vocalist (original drummer from 1979-1987, then vocalist from 1999 onwards) Jo Amore.

The second phase of Nightmare began in 1999 when Jo Amore and Yves Campion revived the band and changed musical styles to melodic power metal. They were signed by Napalm Records and released ‘Cosmovision’ in 2001, their first album in 16 years. Since then Nightmare have had a healthy career, with five more albums released since ‘Cosmovision’, and have toured with and opened for many top bands, including Saxon, Grave Digger, Manowar, Blind Guardian, After Forever and Dark Moor. Rounding out the band aside from Amore and Campion include guitarists Matt Asselberghs and Franck Milleliri, and drummer David Amore who is Jo’s younger brother. Matt Asselberghs is the newest member of the band, replacing J.C. Lefevre who left earlier in 2012.

Starting with their previous album ‘Insurrection’, Nightmare’s sound became much heavier, however retaining the melodic aspect of their power metal style that the band developed back in 1999. ‘Insurrection’ is where I myself came across Nightmare for the first time and enjoyed their aggressive and powerful guitar riffs and creative harmonies and sprinkles of symphonic metal that were wonderfully infused together. The new album, ‘The Burden of God’ continues this trend by Nightmare, which is quite similar to Dio, however with a more modern sound. Iced Earth, Eidolon and Brainstorm also comes to mind when listening to Nightmare’s material.

Really enjoying Jo Amore’s vocal style – aggressive yet melodic, passionate and bold, Amore has great range where he can deliver powerful and crushing mid-level notes, but can also break out the higher-pitched notes with much ease and elegance. The guitar work from Asselberghs and Milleliri is very well done indeed, both axemen delivering wonderfully creative, heavy and chugging riffs that all melodic power metal bands must use. While some songs on the disc border more on melodic than crushingly heavy, fans who want more brute force in their power metal music will have to endure a rollercoaster ride of ups and downs in terms of the heaviness of the guitar-work. Some songs can be deceiving, where the starts of a few tracks appear to be quite heavy, with big builds up and immense guitar riffs; however the tempo suddenly drops away for a more melodic style. It can be slightly frustrating when you are after top gear instead of second or third in some instances.

Nevertheless, ‘The Burden of God’ is a damn fine release and contains plenty of exciting, well written and creative tracks that have come from sheer experience of being in this game for quite some time. “Sunrise in Hell” is greeted by a heavy blasting riff, the track kicks off with a pummelling beat/riff combination. Amore’s vocals take off with passion and grunt as the music slams into you like a runaway freight train. A wonderfully melodic and memorable chorus adds another tick to the score sheet, giving the track an easy “A”.

Another ferocious and speedy riffs opens for the next track, the title track “The Burden of God”, again with a strong double bass smashing and melodic yet raspy vocals from Amore. A kick ass solo finishes the track off in high spirits and so far this album is off to a brilliant start. There are many more awesome tracks on ‘The Burden Of God’ including the bombastic, powerful and melodic “Crimson Empire”, the Dio/Heaven & Hell-esque “Children of the Nation”, the epic “The Dominion Gate (Part III) and the pounding “The Doomsday Prediction”.

Fans of this band should not hesitate to grab this release, as it is easily one of their best in their modern melodic power metal era; while fans of melodic power metal will definitely love what’s on offer here by Nightmare, particularly fans of Dio, Heaven & Hell, Brainstorm, Iced Earth, Eidolon, Crimson Cult, Adagio, Celesty, Kiuas and Seven Witches. This release and the ones before it show that Nightmare are a proven success in this melodic power metal genre, however somewhat unappreciated and totally underrated. Hopefully with this strong effort here, Nightmare can spread their word across the globe that they can go toe-to-toe with the more popular power metal bands around at the moment.

Originally written for www.themetalforge.com (2012)