Review Summary: Lacks necessary wankage to be a great power metal album.
One of the biggest criticisms with music these days is that nothing is fresh anymore. Innovative artists like The Beatles and Michael Jackson combined all the best elements of rock and pop respectively to make music that will stand the test of time. Today we have to listen to Nickelback. The genre of power metal is exactly the same way. From the beginnings with Helloween, Blind Guardian, and Gamma Ray, power metal took aspects from other 80s metal bands and created a unique feel. Throughout the past three decades power metal has given us more innovation with adding symphonic elements (Rhapsody of Fire, Nightwish) or just resetting the bar for quality kick ass power metal (Lost Horizon, Iced Earth). So, where does the latest offering from Dream Evil stand?
Dream Evil’s In the Night
takes the same formula that the early power metal bands took twenty plus years ago and creates a solid album. Nothing about this record is new or innovative, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Starting with “Immortal”, the band creates a nicely paced and catchy opener. Throughout the rest of the album we get impactful riffs and great melodies.
The lack of innovation and creativity is what drags the album down. The songs themselves are definitely solid in structure, but sometimes I find myself going “meh, I have heard all of this before.” Solos are also always nice to hear, but none really blew my mind at all. I personally credit this to Gus G not being in the band, but I’ll give the guitarists credit because their attempt at making good leads and solos worked to some extent. As for the vocals of Niklas Isfeldt, he gives great emotion throughout the entire album and makes a few of the songs that lack catchy musicianship a bit better, or just adds to the awesomeness of these already awesome songs.
There are two songs on here that fit my description of awesomeness of awesome songs: “Bang Your Head” and “The Unchosen One.” “Bang You Head” is four minutes of heavy duty riffing with a nice little solo thrown into the picture. The vocals are where the songs shines though, especially that amazing chorus. Starting with a chanting of “Bang Your Head” by the rest of the band, Niklas just goes and shows off his vocals. “The Unchosen One” on the other hand, is more a mid-tempo song. The highlight of the song isn’t the guitars or the vocals, but the synths that are present in the song that lead up to the pre-chorus and chorus. This is definitely the best song on the album.
Dream Evil’s In the Night
is nothing really special. Their debut Dragonslayer
was more than just an ok power metal album. It had the punch that the genre needed, but this feels like they decided to make the safest record possible. That may have been ok fifteen years ago, but when we just finished a decade where the best power metal were released, it just equals mediocrity saved by a couple cool songs.