Dream Evil - Evilized
Less than a year has gone by (some 8 months...) since the debut Dragonslayer and the Swedes are back again with their latest recording, Evilized. But since their previous one was an absolute killer the question that immediately pops up is if this one is just as good or even better than its predecessor considering not only that it's always hard to live up to high expectations, but also taking in the short time-period between the two albums into the equation.
With the same great musicians in charge as on the last album, Evilized has still of course got the Dream Evil trademarks with the powerful and bombastic riffing, uptempo melodic tracks and great vocals, but perhaps it lacks some of its predecessor's abundance of variation and atmosphere. On the other hand though, is what is lost in that area regained and recaptured to status quo again in power and heavyness. One thing is a bit odd though and that's the choice to put all the faster tracks in the beginning and the more mid-tempo ones towards the end. Be very aware of this when you listen to it, otherwise you'll end up getting a somewhat askew comprehension of the album as a whole.
The good and juicy stuff about Evilized is still the above mentioned powerful and heavy sound and the as always excellent production by Fredrik Nordström. The first five tracks are absolute killers and contains at least one riff that will make a certain Rolf Kasparek green with envy and others at least as jealous. Dream Evil play a very direct and straightforward metal and when you listen to them you realise that these guys absolutely love what they're doing and that they probably have been bottle-fed with metal since they were toddlers.
But back to the question if Evilized can match Dragonslayer. If you'd asked me that question after just the first listening-session of the newest release I would have said Dragonslayer was the superior one without any doubt. I missed tracks like Chasing the Dragon and The Chosen Ones too much but after a few more rotations Evilized really proves its worth and now I'd say it's a dead heat. And that also makes me think a bit further. If Dream Evil are capable of producing an album that is just as good during merely an eight-month period, then what can we expect if the band decides to wait a while longer next time?!
Whether or not you should make a withdrawal from your savings account is as usual optional but if you ask me, Id even put myself in debt to get my own copy of any Dream Evil release. No matter which one of Dragonslayer or Evilized you end up choosing, neither will make you regret your decision cause the way I see it, its not a question of loosing cash, but an investment for the future that will bring you hours and hours of Swedish quality-steel.