Nevermore Biography

This quintessential power metal band was formed out of the ashes of Seattle, Washington, USA-based thrash act Sanctuary in 1991 by Warrel Dane (vocals) and Jim Sheppard (bass), with the addition of Jeff Loomis (guitar, who had played in the final line-up of Sanctuary) and Van Williams (drums). Nevermore’s stated intention was to make technical yet melodic power metal. After recording 24 demo tracks with producer Neil Kernon, the band was signed by Century Media, with the demo tracks making up the bulk of their 1995 self-titled debut. The album hinted at the work of Dane and Sheppard’s former incarnation, but also demonstrated progressive leanings and vision. High profile tours followed, with Blind Guardian in Europe and Death in the USA, with Nevermore recruiting guitarist Pat O’Brien to beef up their live sound. The In Memory EP featured two Bauhaus covers alongside reworked originals, and helped keep Nevermore’s profile high while they wrote new material. The Politics Of Ecstasy saw the band really hit the mark, with Kernon’s production and Dane’s incredible vocals meriting particular attention. Brooding and accomplished, the album delivered in a brutal and mesmerising fashion and was snapped up by the band’s growing fanbase. After completing the album O’Brien (a long-time death metal fan) left the band to join Cannibal Corpse, and was replaced by a friend of the band, Tim Calvert (ex-Forbidden). Despite the success of The Politics Of Ecstasy, Nevermore aimed to make the follow-up more song-orientated and focused than the previous album. Once again entering the studio with Kernon, Dreaming Neon Black was a diverse yet typically direct album and featured for the first time, female vocals among the intense guitars. In support of the album the band toured the USA with Mercyful Fate, Iced Earth and Arch Enemy, and also played some shows in Australia and Europe.

A newly married Calvert left the band on good terms in early 2000 and Nevermore opted to carry on as a four-piece. Returning to Village Productions in Texas to begin work on a new album, the band opted to work with producer Andy Sneap rather than Kernon. Dead Heart In A Dead World was complex and melodic with Dane’s commanding vocals joining in a thunderous combination with Loomis’ death-like riffing on seven-string guitar. Nevermore also romped through a brutal cover version of Simon And Garfunkel’s ‘The Sound Of Silence’. The quartet completed another album Enemies Of Reality before recruiting additional guitarist Steve Smyth to record the excellent This Godless Endeavor.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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