It takes a lot of strength and personal faith to get where the Greek is now, after working shitty jobs and changing apartments dozens of times, Marios Iliopoulos has now settled in nicely, living in Sweden with all his Metal buddies working out his vision, my respect goes out to this dude here. I hope Marios is doing well in Sweden because NIGHTRAGE could be doing better on “Descent Into Chaos”. “Sweet Vengeance” did set pretty high marks to follow, I think it was a one off thing, like an album you create once in you’re life.
The line-up sees Per Möller Jensen returning to his main band while bass player Brice Leclerque goes to join DISSECTION at the center of the hype of Jon Nödveidt’s prison release, good for him. Ex SEPTIC FLESH drummer Fotis and Henric Carlsson of CIPHER SYSTEM fill the empty spaces well, especially Fotis shows off refined class in every song, very tight performance so no complaints so far, oh but there’s is one, I’d love to hear Tom Englund’s voice again, I’ll bet that’s a chant you’ll hear more about.
“Descent Into Chaos” doesn’t stray too far off the course set on “Sweet Vengeance”, the recipe’s been slightly altered but remains classic with everything you wanted in an album like this; the basic Thrash/Heavy Metal guitar battles, Swedish lead melodies, double bass kicks on the drums and screaming vocals recalling a young Anders Fridén, all embedded in an aggressive as fuck attitude and updated with flawless audio levels coming from the mixing boards of Studio Fredman. I know Lindberg’s a great shouter, there’s nothing like hearing him tearing his speech apart, but there’s no contrast, no clean vocals, the one and only ingredient that set them apart from the rest is denied, it would be kinda sleazy though to get Englund to sing again, I mean this is NIGHTRAGE, they should be able to achieve success on their own merits.
Mix the old with the new, that’s the formula Marios and the rest of his crew are working with and frankly, it wears off pretty quick with me. “Being Nothing” is an obvious choice for a opening smasher but at the same time it sounds rudely familiar to “The Tremor” as “Frozen” is almost a second albeit more up beat registration of “The Glow Of The Setting Sun” in a different format because of Mikael Stanne’s brief vocal appearance in the chorus. Guitar virtuoso and night’n’day Metal hero Gus G. has spent a lot of time with Power Metal lately, writing, recording and releasing albums with FIREWIND, MYSTIC PROPHECY and DREAM EVIL, the guy loves it to death and indulgences the crowd with some more of his tasty solos, like the dual shred feast in the dying stages of “Omen”.
Aggressive and tight, you like this, you want this. Acoustics have been dropped, clean vocals aren’t used anymore, (except for Stanne’s ten seconds of clean singing, yay!) keyboards reduced to mini jobs (hardly used at all)… it’s much more of a guitar album really. It might seem like I’m ditching this album, well, I’m not, I’m not saying “D.I.C.” is a bad album, it’s likely to be one of the tightest Death Thrash Metal albums you’ll hear this year, it’s just that I was hoping they’d push the envelope more instead of going one step back, which they have done with this release.
As said, less variations, enhanced focus on aggression and speed, monotonous vocals, it’s not like the band got worse or anything, they just played it safe this time. It’s a good album yet I can’t escape the feeling of being lightly disappointed when I’m listening to “Descent Into Chaos”. (Online April 13, 2005)