Nightrage – Insidious

Categories: Reviews
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Published on: August 19, 2011

Nightrage. Insidious. Fitting names, because the sun is down and listening to them is infuriating me. The album is getting under my skin. Never before have I struggled so hard to pick out what I specifically hated about an album because I just didn’t give a shit. Seriously, I maintained a general level of dislike that led me to become deaf to any kind of noticeable nuisances.

Everyone is obviously jazzed up about this, with former vocalist Tomas Lindberg (also known for his work with At the Gates) and Tom England (Evergrey), Gus G (Ozzy Osbourne, Arch Enemy, Firewind), and Apollo Papathanassiou (Firewind) making guest appearances. Obviously this album has guest appearances by musicians with some clout. OBVIOUSLY. Did I fail to mention the guest appearances? WE MUSTN’T FORGET ABOUT THE GUEST APPEARANCES! And yet, just because an album boasts credible musicians, it doesn’t mean they brought something to the table. Example: I think Peter Gabriel has clout, but does that mean he’s an excellent choice for a guest spot on the next Ihsahn album? Sounds dubious. Let’s take the guest appearances out of the picture (can we please, people?) I noticed something while I was listening to these fifteen tracks (thirteen; one intro, one outro, one prelude, ALL POINTLESS). Besides the glaring truth (i.e. THEY ALL SOUND THE SAME), they all sound like Soilwork (SANS vocals)

As you’re reading this you must be asking yourself “Is she serious? There must be something good about this album worth mentioning.” There is. The guitar work on the album is beyond reproach. Want proof? Check out the fourth track, “Wrapped in Deceitful Dreams.” It starts off slow, but give it a minute and 12 seconds. Or fast forward a minute and 12 seconds so you can get kidney punched by a sick solo. With that in mind, listen to track number seven, “Cloaked in Wolf Skin” and get ready for another kick to the gut at 2:24. And for a little nostalgia, listen to the first few seconds of the ninth piece, “Utmost End of Pain.” Perhaps these guys were Death fans?

Now, back to the bad news. This entire album is an amalgamation of other albums wrapped in a fucking bow. It’s not just the obvious Soilwork influence either. There are other forces (cough, other bands, cough cough) at work here. IF I WANT TO HEAR DARK TRANQUILITY, I’LL GO LISTEN TO THEM (They sound more like a watered down version, that was a lazy comparison) . IF I WANT TO LISTEN TO IN FLAMES (yeah right), I’LL GO BORROW SOMEONE’S COPY OF THE JESTER RACE (kidding, I’d rather grab Whoracle). The point is, it takes serious chops to play the way Nightrage plays, no doubt about it. These guys didn’t just wing it, they have talent, dedication, and skill. What this album lacked was originality. Nothing was fun about it. On the opposite end of the spectrum, nothing was dark or moving about it either. I was bored, and after awhile, just plain enraged. At night. Nightraged.

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