Nightingale - White Darkness
Black Mark
Progressive Hard Rock
10 songs (45.42)
Release year: 2007
Nightingale, Black Mark
Reviewed by Aleksie
Up until this summer my only connections with the various projects of Swedish metal virtuoso Dan Swanö was the death metal-based bunch of Edge of Sanity and Bloodbath. But just a while ago a friend of my told me to absolutely check out Nightingale, a much more melodic and even AOR-tinged project. Sure enough, I got their latest release, White Darkness, and this is pretty magnificent stuff, I must say. Not what I expected to say the least when associating it with the name Swanö, but this is an album that goes to show you the guy’s huge diversity.

The music definitely has AOR-qualities in the lush melodies and huge, sugary harmony vocals. Some of these layers remind me of the kings of the craft, Queen and Def Leppard. There are humongous choruses like on the opener, The Fields of Life and the awesome-in-its-mellowness title track. Although they both are eclipsed by Trial And Error, which is probably the single most catchy track I’ve heard all year. Just fist-bangingly tremendous!

Pianos and keyboards fatten the sound to rich and bloated heights that are only appropriate for material as ambitiously melodic as this album is. Hideaway is near-symphonic with the gargantuan arrangements, while To My Inspiration slightly brings flavours of Blind Guardian with the acoustic passages. Just slightly. There are no real low points on the record, only songs that rise above the rest. No filler, but not quite only killer either.

The progressive aspects of the music are brought out in the occasional tempo twists and mood changes that keep the stuff very much alive and away from any bland, average rock format. The hooks that are more or less obvious depending on the song, are so numerous that one finds new melodies and quirks by each listening. I was very pleasantly surprised that someone out there still made music so unashamedly “soft” in a way, but with such skill that it is everything but boring. The band plays tightly and Swanö’s vocals shine throughout the whole album. His voice is deeper than one would expect from this kind of music, but this only works to the albums advantage.

All in all, I would definitely recommend White Darkness to all fans of melodic rock and metal, especially the ones that want a bit of challenge and longevity along with the awesome choruses and massive melodies. I will definitely search for more Nightingale myself after hearing this one.

Killing Songs :
The Fields Of Life, Trial And Error, Reasons, Hideaway, To My Inspiration, White Darkness, Belief & Trust
Aleksie quoted 89 / 100
Other albums by Nightingale that we have reviewed:
Nightingale - I reviewed by Milan and quoted 88 / 100
Nightingale - Nightfall Overture reviewed by Ken and quoted 90 / 100
Nightingale - Alive Again reviewed by Ben and quoted 85 / 100
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There are 7 replies to this review. Last one on Mon Nov 26, 2007 8:31 pm
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