Welcome to the musical meandering insights of Aaron Joy. Here you'll find 600 reviews of CDs & DVDs of rock & metal in all its variations, mainstream & indie. What they all share is that the album or band is unique in some way & not every submission was reviewed. Please share these reviews or link to them if you like what you read. Reviews are no longer being posted here but feel free to e-mail Aaron & post comments. (Formerly the Roman Midnight Music Blog)

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Winter Nights ~ Winter Nights (aka debut) (EP)


(Click on heading to visit official website.)
Style: thrash, death metal, heavy metal
Label: self-released
Year: 2010
Home: New York City

Members: Jeremy ~ lead vocals/rhythm guitar
Ef ~ lead guitar/b. vocals
Monster Mike ~ drums
Carmine ~ bass

Additional: Rafael ~ bass/drums/b. vocals


When I was a boy I had a fascination with the origin of band names. I don't pay much attention these days but the description on WN's myspace page struck me as interesting. "The meaning of Winter Nights is the gathering to celebrate a new coming, a time for remembering the dead, and a festival to honor our will for life." My immediate thought was that while the name is great the meaning doesn't exactly shout death metal. It doesn't exactly shout death or anything morbid or satanic & sounds like something more akin to Savatage's rock operas. But, then, those of us who listen to a lot of the genre know that there's a lot more to the metal picture. It's not just all noise & lyrics to match. Having just mentioned Savatage I can't help but mention them again to describe the music of WN. "Deceptive Dreams" could actually be off of a Savatage album with it's hauntingly emotional guitar opening to then suddenly pick up speed with double bass & a growl. With some bands this is where the song goes to hell. But, actually, it's a very atmospheric ride WN takes us on. The growl deceptively hides an forthcoming vocalist that is more akin to Rammstein than the undecipherable growl you might expect to ruin the music. Listening I can't help but imagine the collective voice of marching soldiers stomping down the road on the road to battle. "What Compels The Dead" is another highlight with a great soft bass solo for the bridge before returning to a Storm Trooper rhythm. WN know just when to bring in some variation into the thrash onslaught to keep the music from getting predictable. Being a young band means they also have unmixed demos available to the public. Including demos can often hurt a band because you hear how much better they are with some better production or, I should say, how bad they really are. I won't say that the production helps WN any, though fathers of the scene Mayhem & Burzum have far far worse quality, but luckily it doesn't hurt them either. There's no question that these guys are good, particularly when an acoustic guitar comes out of the mix on "Meet Your Maker". If anything the demos put more emphasis on the vocals & my request to the band never to change singer or to have him change how he sings cause you've found the perfect voice for the music, something so many bands hunt for unsuccessfully. If you like thrash with a dose of creativity this is a good band to keep an eye out for. I wish them all the best in their future creativity.


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