Hypnotica Nostalgia (demo) 2012

1. Dust (4:29)
2. Rekindle the Flame (6:25)
3. Escape (5:29)
4. Justified Faith (4:21)
5. The Separation (5:46)
6. Remission Plan (6:01)
7. Raise the Dead (4:49)

Nostalgia are a California-based Christian heavy metal band. Their sound and their spirit harken back to the glory days of Christian heavy metal when the message was as important, if not more-so, than the music itself. Bands like Barren Cross, Bloodgood, Sacred Warrior and Saint are no doubt some of this band's biggest influences.

The seven-song CD demo opens with a with a straight-forward, up-beat heavy metal song that is built around a crunchy riff and the clean, smooth vocals of Brian Dale. This is followed-up by an overly long power-metal ballad titled "Rekindle the Flame". The song is sung as a prayer and is obviously written to encourage Christians whose faith has waned over time. I can definitely appreciate the emotion that this song is built around, but felt the song itself would have been better if it was shortened slightly and put deeper into the CD. As the second track, the song seems to disrupt the flow of the album almost immediately after only one raging track. "Escape" bring back the intensity and aggression. The song opens with some heavy, laboring bass guitar and slowly builds from a slow, heavy, crunchy guitar riff to an fast and furious, up-beat chorus. Likewise, "Justified Faith" and "The Separation" are heavy tracks, with "Justified Faith" being slightly more upbeat than the follow-up. The demo ends with two more heavy songs, "Remission Plan" and "Raise the Dead". The later pushing the boundaries of speed metal.

The production of Nostalgia's demos isn't bad, though the mix is a bit uneven throughout. While the instruments all seem to mix well, the bass guitar is buried and the vocals seem to sit on top of the music most of the time. I'm really hoping that this band will continue to forge ahead and release new music with improved production values. Christian metal bands like Nostalgia are far and fe between in an age when many band's would prefer not to be labeled.

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