Nevermore – Dreaming Neon Black

My introduction to Nevermore was their Dreaming Neon Black album (1999). It’s a concept album of sorts, but as with many lyrics and stories by Warrel Dane the true meaning still eludes me. Let’s have a closer look at what the album is all about.

After a short instrumental introduction the album starts with three rather straightforward songs in the form of Beyond Within, The Death Of Passion and I’m The Dog. This is quite a departure from the more technical and progressive angle of the Politics Of Ecstasy album. All the aforementioned songs do feature some brilliant guitar work by Jeff Loomis and Tim Calvert, though.

The title track and Deconstruction are the two showpieces on Dreaming Neon Black. Both feature adventurous and progressive arrangements in the vein of this album’s predecessor. By far my personal favorite compositions on this record. The Fault Of The Flesh and Poison Godmachine continue the pattern set by the album’s first three tracks. The Lotus Eaters and Cenotaph are quite psychedelic in nature.

Despite the often brilliant moments Dreaming Neon Black tends to bog down towards the end. The last three songs don’t have the vim and vigour which characterize the rest of the song material. One or two songs less would have made this album a truly stunning experience.

Just like the previous record the production is handled by Neil Kernon. The sound is again bass heavy, although the guitar sound is less compressed this time around.

The shorter songs on Dreaming Neon Black formed the blueprint for latter day Nevermore. I still think it’s a very memorable and enjoyable effort, despite its minor shortcomings. Great!

Written by Raymond Westland

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