On A New Disease Is Born, melodic death metal band Nightrage demonstrate above-average song writing and a strong tendency towards relatively short, compact and tightly delivered tracks. While the music is effective, it gets predictable and is sometimes in danger of drifting from effectively simple to plainly simplistic.
Nightrage is an interesting band, since Greece traditionally is not the birthplace of too many well-known metal bands. Founding member Marios Iliopoulos has relocated to Sweden, and with a revolving door of band members, it remains to be seen where the band will evolve to. After the recording of A New Disease Is Born, all the band members except Iliopoulos left to pursue other projects.
The strength of A New Disease Is Born lies in the melodies that underpin each of the tracks. While none are groundbreaking, all are powerful enough to carry a good song, often with lyrical or folk metal shadings but without ever losing the power emphasis. As a result, there are no poor tracks on the CD, and band is to be commended for maintaining uniform quality over 12 tracks. At the same time, the melodies are often poorly developed, and the CD fails to deliver a stand-out flagship tune, although opener Spiral comes close, with vocals that peel the paint and a thick, unstoppable groove.
The vocals delivered by Jimmie Strimell mix a deep growl with a relatively high-pitched clean sound on almost every song. The drumming is solid, but with some unnecessary use of the double bass, while the bass guitar is very much in the far background.
While the guitar work by Alex Svenningson is sharp, the CD definitely suffers badly from the complete absence of any memorable guitar solos. Either the band is intentionally steering away from solos, or soloing is simply not in Svenningson's repertoire; either way, the result is like a well-cooked dish that is lacking a key ingredient.
An interesting and definitely enjoyable curiosity, even though it fails to ever truly soar.
Jimmie Strimell - Vocals
Marios Iliopoulos - Guitars
Alex Svenningson - Drums
Henric Carlsson - Bass
Songlist (Ratings out of 10):
1. Spiral - 9
2. Reconcile - 8
3. Death-Like Silence - 7
4. A Condemned Club - 8
5. Scars - 8
6. De-Fame - 8
7. Scathing - 7
8. Surge of Pity - 7
9. Encircle - 8
10. Drone - 8
11. Spiritual Impulse - 7
12. A New Disease Is Born - 7
Engineered, Mixed, and Mastered by Jacob Hansen.
Produced by Jacob Hansen and Marios Iliopoulos.
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