Proving that nu metal is still a valid presence and temptation, Central Florida outfit NoSelf have just released their new seven track mini-album to excite ears and arouse the spirit. Human-Cyborg Relations Episode 1 unites familiar traits with the band’s imagination stoking individuality, sparking body and an already bred appetite for the earlier heyday of nu metal along the way. It is claimed there is a new revival of the genre; a most welcome second coming if band and album is evidence of its new adventure.
Emerging in 2002, NoSelf draw on the inspiration of bands such as Deftones, Spineshank, Adema, Nothingface, and Korn for their sound, spicing making a potent ingredient in the band’s new Matt Johnson recorded offering. It is flavouring which has enriched previous encounters but makes more of a hue than ingredient of the immediately pleasing Human-Cyborg Relations Episode 1.
The album opens with Casting Stones, instantly cradling ears in a melodic coaxing as keys entice. Their suggestive welcome swiftly draws the listener into a waiting raw roar of sound, the guitar of Justin Dabney a predacious tempest of riffs and grooves backed by the rapier swings of drummer Drew Miller. The snarling tones of vocalist Dylan Hart Kleinhans are enticingly tempered and supported by warmer vocals, the union a bridge between the savage and electronically enchanting aspects of the outstanding opener. As suggested earlier, the song brings recognisable aspects in its turbulence but equally a squall of fresh enterprise which has body and thoughts quickly locked in.
As great as it is, the starter is still eclipsed by next up Save Me; carnivorous riffs and the wonderfully gnarly tones of Joey Bivo’s bass chewing on the senses, their ferocious web sonic barbed wire. Similarly to the first, the track contrasts its ferocity with a harmonic radiance, vocals and melodies flirting with ears before falling into the onrushing scourge of aggression though still forcing their inviting calm to the surface. That Adema influence is an especially open and enticing colour in the storm, and across the release, adding to its drama as it tempers the corrosive heart of the excellent song.
Nudisease is just as appealing and intrusive as its predecessors though with a more tolerant nature, riffs and grooves to the fore from its first breath. The intensity of the first two is pulled back in the third though its fire is as pyre like but turned into a hook carting swagger which has the body bouncing. Slips into calmer passages are fluid and magnetic, the track revealing a bolder adventure than the previous two if less of their greed inducing savagery while successor Through Your Eyes also embraces mellower climes in its more mercurial atmosphere and proposition. The song though has a volcanic temperament and heart which fuels its melodic and aggressive sides, creating an unpredictable and rabid but ultimately restrained trespass which maybe teases more than fulfils but still leaves pleasure stuck in its previous high.
If there has been a more enticing start to a song this year than that of Outatime we have yet to hear it, the track beckoning with flirtatious sonic finger wagging before the funk hearted bass of Bivo adds its lure; swiftly followed by a rapacious tide of riffs. Just as tenacious vocals and rhythms soon jump in, their more predatory touch colluding with the atmospherically intriguing, funkily mischievous antics of the song and the similarly devious presence of Hart Kleinhans. Eventually its carnal rawness erupts in a contagion of an insatiable chorus before things ebb and flow in intensity with increasing infectiousness. The track steals best song honours in no time, cementing its claim with every listen.
The weakest moment on the encounter is Frisco but the fact it is one inescapably catchy and persuasive moment tells you how potent Human-Cyborg Relations Episode 1 is as a whole. The song has a definite pop spiced side not heard on the previous tracks; a kinder more deliberately infectious nature which has the feet trapping and vocal chords induced. There is something of Australian band Voyager to the song at times which only adds to its tempting and a growing growl that shows real teeth but lacks the weight and tenacity of its predecessors for personal tastes. In saying that there is no denying it commands full involvement and enjoyment before making way for the closing delights of Ctrl-Z. It too has an undisguised poppiness but latched to an imposing antipathy which hits the spot as much as its infectious escapades. The song is another which bears boldness in design and adventure to captivate ears and imagination but also a hearty tension of sound and emotion which grips eager participation.
Recently signing a worldwide distribution deal with Zombie Shark Records, the new record label from Noah “Shark” Robertson (Motograter, EX-The Browning), NoSelf have pushed themselves to the fore of this new wave of nu metal seeded goodness with Human-Cyborg Relations Episode 1. There is more to their sound than just that field of flavouring, one we eagerly await hearing expand ahead.
Human-Cyborg Relations Episode 1 is out now and available @ http://www.zombieshark.net/ and https://zombiesharkrecords.bandcamp.com/album/human-cyborg-relations-episode-1
Pete RingMaster 22/08/2017
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