They made their first demo in 2001, then another 2 demos in 2002. Their first release, Sweet Vengeance, was released in 2003 and featured drummer Per Möller Jensen (The Haunted), and bassist Brice Leclercq. They also managed to acquire the services of legendary vocalist Tomas Lindberg (ex-At the Gates). Sweet Vengeance also featured guest clean vocals on a few tracks by Tom S. Englund of Evergrey fame.
The album proceeds for the track "Gloomy Daydreams" on an earlier edit, with Gus G. on vocals. Their second release, Descent into Chaos, was released in 2005 and had a change of line-up, with the addition of a more permanent rhythm section. Fotis Benardo (Septic Flesh, ex-Innerwish) took over on drums and Henric Carlsson, who also plays in the band Cipher System, on bass. Mikael Stanne, of Dark Tranquillity, provided a clean vocal section on the track "Frozen".
Tomas Lindberg left the band so that a more full-time vocalist could accompany them on tours and studio albums. When Gus G. was performing with Arch Enemy at Ozzfest 2005, he was replaced by Pierre Lysell for Nightrage's touring activities. For some of Nightrage's tour in support of Bolt Thrower, Gus G. was again unavailable and his place was taken by Christian Muenzer, of Necrophagist.
In March 2006, Gus G. permanently left Nightrage to focus completely on Firewind (later in 2009 becoming the guitarist for heavy metal legend Ozzy Osbourne). At this time Fotis Benardo decided also to leave Nightrage and focus on the reunited Septic Flesh. He was replaced by Alex Svenningson.
Their third release, A New Disease Is Born, was released in 2007. Gus G. was replaced by Dragonland/Amaranthe guitar virtuoso Olof Mörck. The song "Scathing" was chosen for the band's second video, and was directed by Bob Katsionis. After the release of A New Disease Is Born Alex Svenningson and Jimmie Strimell left the band to form the melodic metalcore band Dead by April.
Longtime bassist Henrik Karlsson also left the band due to his family obligations.Vocalist Antony Hämäläinen, bassist Anders Hammer, and drummer Johan Nunez joined the band in the summer of 2007. Their fourth album, Wearing a Martyr's Crown, was recorded, produced, and mixed by Fredrik Nordström at Studio Fredman for a 2009 release date. On 18 February 2010, Nightrage released their third music video for the song "Wearing a Martyr's Crown." The video was again directed by Bob Katsionis. "A Grim Struggle", "Collision of Fate", "Shed the Blood", and "Wearing a Martyr's Crown" were made available as downloadable content for the Rock Band video game series on Xbox. On 30 June 2011 "A Grim Struggle" was made available for download on the PlayStation 3 console. Vengeance Descending is a double CD reissue of albums Vengeance Descending and Descent into Chaos.
The first disc features a bonus track called Gloomy Daydreams, and the second one features Black Skies, which was also a bonus track. Both tracks were previously only available in Japanese releases.It was announced via Blabbermouth.net that former At the Gates and Nightrage vocalist Tomas Lindberg will be performing guest vocals for the new album entitled "Insidious". A short video clip of the session was added to YouTube. Other guests set to appear on the new album are Gus G, Tom Englund, Apollo Papathanasio and John K.
Insidious was the first album since Sweet Vengeance to feature the original line-up. Antony Hämäläinen spoke briefly about the album's direction in a recent interview with Deathmetalbaboon.com "It sounds really heavy. Stripped down and in your face. The songs are a bit shorter and with fewer acoustic guitars than Wearing a Martyr’s Crown. It’s a very pissed off the sound, so it’s going to be a really heavy record.
Lots of guitar solos and melodies there too of course." The album release dates were 26 September 2011 in Europe and 11 October 2011 in North America. On 23 March the title track Insidious was made available as downloadable content for the Rock Band video game series on Xbox. On 21 May the band released a new video for the track Delirium of the Fallen. The video was shot on 28 April at the Eightball Club in Thessaloniki, Greece. Directing of the clip was handled by Gabriel Psaltakis. Starting on 9 October 2011, the band supported the new album on a tour of North America with Firewind and Arsis, titled "Frets Of Fury". In late April 2012, a tour of Europe alongside Demon Hunter and Deadlock was scheduled. August 2012, was the first time the band played Asia.
Headlining the Daejeon Metal Festival in South Korea. Announced in April 2013, the band will headline a tour of Japan for the first time in their career. The tour is set to start on 5 November and will be titled "Extreme metal over Japan". Support for the six-date trek will come from the Australian technical death metal band Psycroptic, American technical deathcore band The Faceless and French deathcore act In Arkadia. Olof Mörck has not been part of a live performance or band photography since 2011. It is assumed he has left the band to focus on his main project Amaranthe.Antony Hämäläinen and Johan Nunez officially left the band to pursue other musical ventures in 2013. In July 2016, Magnus Söderman (guitars) and Lawrence Dinamarca (drums) were officially announced as the newest members of Nightrage.
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