NOSTRADAMEUS - HELLBOUND - AFM
In the world of heavy metal bands there are bands which are redundant and mindlessly rehash everything that has gone before them. There are also bands which have a character of their own without denying the true essence and meaning of the sub-genre. There are more of the former than the latter bands. One of the latter types of bands is Sweden's Nostradameus whose fourth album Hellbound is now upon us courtesy of the growing AFM label. Much of the band's appeal is due the charismatic and powerful vocals of Freddy Persson. Helping him in their own right are the lively musicians who create classy metal songs with names like The Reaper's Image and the title track. There are echoes of Tad Morose and Hammerfall in Nostradameus, but this quintet is not a copy band. It walks alongside those acts. Although song number seven, One Step Away, rather sounds like Stratovarius. Hellbound is a wise choice for fans of consistent and catchy heavy metal with an ear for melody. - Ali "The Metallian"
NOSTRADAMEUS - PATHWAY - AFM
These heavy metalling Swedes have beat Judas Priest to the Nostradameus (or 'Nostradamus') punch by several years to say the least. The fun does not stop there. Pathway has a great looking cover and a lot of above average heavy metal. The art of Nostradameus is that it has the vocals and the music, but also the hooks and the enough commercial potential to break out of the pack.
While a rigid heavy metal diet suits most fans (same here) just fine, there can be no denying that this quintet does what it does right. Wall Of Anger and The Untouchables begin my version of the album with that 'just right' mixture. Until The End is an exciting heavy metal track, MDCC a.d.pt.II is more complex and the slow song Not Only Women Bleed takes the cake as far as ballads are concerned. Singer Freddy Persson is remarkable near everywhere. Perhaps the best example is the song Death By My Side close to the album’s end. For heavy metal fans, who nonetheless shy away from power metal, Pathway is a rather complete album. - Anna Tergel