In the two years between their previous release and new EP Insanity Relapse, Polish metallers Neuronia have grown or rather matured into a really striking band. Their two albums before the new EP, The Winter Of My Heart (2008) and Follow The White Mouse (2010) were both strong formidable releases unleashing a thrash/melodic metal brew which grabbed the attention easily and persistently even if not offering the greatest of surprises along the way. Insanity Relapse sees the band take strides forward with a new air of unpredictability and definition to their sound. Arguably there is less emphasis on thrash to fuel their music but it is more they have developed it into a fuller compact and melodic creature with certainly no less aggression than before.
With the new EP being available as a free download on their bandcamp site it is a new marker being laid by the band, something founding member of the band and rhythm guitarist Michal ‘Misiek’ Rogala stated when he commented “’We want to open a brand new chapter in the history of our band with this material. For the first time in our band’s existence, our whole line-up was engaged not only in arranging the tracks, but also in writing.” There is definitely a fuller unity and texture to the music which maybe was lacking before and certainly a new breath to the band which takes them to a new level.
The EP hits the ground running with opener Alone In The Dark. From the off powerful riffs rush through the ear with an acute eagerness whilst the drums of Lukasz Sobczyk build a mighty and impressive rhythmic assault. The song settles slightly as the vocals of new frontman Maciej ‘Tektur’ Nawrot solidly thrusts forward gruffly delivered incisive words within the great metallic wall of energy. The track immediately ignites an enthused appetite for the continuing assault and has one fully intrigued when the song takes a detour into a fine melodic aside with the solo play of lead guitarist Rafal ‘Lewy’ Lewandowski engaging with every note, before rampaging once again to its climax.
Best track on the release comes next in the shape of 3:33. From its first notes to the last the song is an enthralling storm of punishing rhythms and challenging riffs which leaves one on the edge of their seat. With guitar play as scorched as the rim of the sun and the vocals of Nawrot at their very varied best on the release the track is immense and destined to be a favourite of a great many. The best thing about the song is you can never predict what is coming next but it does not just throw discriminate diversity at the ear, everything flows within a seamless ride of thrash/melodic rock for the greatest pleasure.
Kick The Fuckers Out and Moon Over Providence complete the quartet of songs from the Warsaw band. The first is an adrenaline powered crush of rampant riffs and combative beats matched by aggressive vocals. Again with strong variation the track enters a smoother passage of almost grunge like respite before blasting and teasing the ear with some fine classic metal invention. To its end the song swaggers through diverse stages whilst ensuring the focus and satisfaction is kept at a high with great musical skill. The second of the two tracks is a straighter thrash metal piece with a definite Metallica lilt to its platform. Not the most inventive of the four songs it still offers a full and equal well of pleasure to dive right into without hesitation. It is just rock n roll to ignite the passions, nothing more and certainly nothing less.
Lyrically the tracks are as strong as the sounds around them and well presented by the fine vocals of Nawrot, a definite plus to the new craft the band has found. Produced by Pawel ‘Janos’ Grabowski (Antigama, Centurion, Disperse, Dianoya or Lostbone), Insanity Relapse is n excellent return for the band. The only moan that can be placed upon it is the release lacks clarity around bassist Daniel ‘Beton’ Grotkiewicz. You consistently feel his presence and get breezes of his fine ability but he is lost in the storm of noise created at times though he is a major creator of its dark intensity, to hear his lines clearly.
As mentioned the EP is a free download from the link below and there really is no excuse for not finding out for yourselves what a great and destined to be even greater band Neuronia is. What…still here?