This latest collection of metal madness from the rulers of modern progressive thrash Nevermore continues the trend of brutal yet melodic chaos started on Dead Heart in a Dead World back in 2000. This band was always heavy as hell, but in the last few years an intelligent sense of atmopshere and melody has started to seep into their music, and the nine tracks on Enemies of Reality shows the band maturing as songwriters, throwing in tons of brutally heavy riffs, complex arrangements, and catchy vocal passages.
I mean, what metal fan can resist the churning riff-o-rama of "Ambivalent", an angry tune dealing with internal hatred and despair, that is filled with tons of angst laden vocals from bandleader Warrel Dane and crunchy guitar work courtesy of Jeff Loomis. It's a masterpiece of pacing and drama, filled with enough complex riffs to please the prog-metal crowd, but heavy enough to have the most critical headbanger pounding his/her cranium with rapid glee. "Never Purify" is a relentless juggernaut, a boiling sea of non-stop guitar assaults and wailing vocals, that segues into the melodic and emotional "Tomorrow Turns into Yesterday", perhaps one of the most accessible songs that this band has ever recorded. Featuring one of Dane's best vocal performances, this tune will have you repeating the chorus over and over, as well as marveling at the tasty guitar solo from Mr. Loomis. A trip to the mosh bit seems the best way to go on the intense "Create the Infinite", while the multi-tracked guitars and vocals of "Noumenon" add an interesting gothic/progressive touch to that song. Of course, what Nevermore album would be complete with a throwback to 80's thrash? In this instance, the CD begins and ends with two ball-busters, "Enemies of Reality" and "Seed Awakening", songs littered with razor sharp guitar riffs, a furious rhythm section, and Dane's leather lunged vocals.
Nevermore continues to produce quality metal time and time again. Enemies of Reality might be their best yet. Here's hoping it won't be another three years for the next one.
1) Enemies of Reality
3) Never Purify
4) Tomorrow Turns Into Yesterday
5) I, Voyager
6) Create the Infinite
7) Who Decides
9) Seed Awakening