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A Nightmare From Texas - Acadia Bar & Grill, Houston, TX 12.10.2019

When you sense that you are witnessing the beginning of something special, there is an urgency to help spread the word about the band far and wide. A Nightmare From Texas released their self-released debut at the beginning of 2019 and packed it full of anthems that recalled the likes of Metallica, Iced Earth, and other Metal bands with an injection of a modern touch. I had an opportunity to catch the band live here in Houston at the Acadia Bar & Grill which is one of my favorite local venues as the sound is always awesome. Following an impressive set by fellow up and comers Ominous Necro, A Nightmare From Texas took to the stage.

Starting the set with the hook filled adrenalin rush of ‘Holding On’ is the perfect opener to the show. Mitchell Almonte takes center stage with the restrained guitar work serving as the perfect set up to the song and the set. Some initial mic issues are quickly fixed, and we get lost in the music with the band offering a great chorus that someday many people will be singing in unison with them. The musicianship is excellent with each member of the band laying waste to the venue. Next up is the groove based ‘Murdered You’ where the band incorporate some Metallica influences to create another song where the chorus becomes addictive and allows new fans to start singing at least part of the chorus by the end of the song. This one could fall right into rotation on Metal radio and make an impact.

While the production and mix on the album is not the best which is understandable for a brand new band, the likes of ‘No Escape’ contain much more bite live. The guitar interplay between Anthony Padilla whose leads show that the new generation of Metal is in safe hands and the rhythm guitar of Mitchell Almonte provide the perfect chemistry with one another. Logan Herzog takes a few minutes to encourage the crowd to get moving before the band launch into great thrasher ‘Halo Held Up By Your Horns’ with this being another one that goes to another level live. Almonte provides excellent screaming counter vocals to Herzog’s clean vocals. Padilla takes center stage for the introduction to eight minute epic ‘Live Like Kings.’ The multiple tempos remind me of vintage Iced Earth with Herzog’s mic giving him a few issues during the verses, but he soars on the chorus with an authority that makes you wonder if he even really needs a mic.

Nearing the end of the set, the band gets into the moody ‘Not The Same’ with old Iced Earth and Metallica circa ‘Fade To Black’ serving as reference points for the song. The chorus is huge again with Herzog’s voice being perfect for this type of music. The band have saved my personal favorite for last with ‘War You Cannot Win’ being an old school Thrash style classic with a monster chorus. This is simply another one that should be all over Metal radio and taking these guys to a whole other level in terms of popularity.

All in all, this was an excellent show by a band that has clearly laid down an excellent foundation and combines elements of classic Metal with new Metal to take them to the next level. The live show takes the songs to another level and leaves us knowing the debut album’s production might not be the best, but the songs are definitely there. Do yourself a favor and check these guys out.

Review - Gerald Stansbury

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