I’m getting sick and tired of the judgment in the Nu-Metal subgenre along with categorizing several American Metal bands that formed in the late 90’s-early 2000’s altogether. It is time to expand the mind and open those Metal doors. As long as the music is good, who cares? Leading to NONPOINT, a band that has been around for about twenty years now and have somehow fallen under the radar compared to acts such as SLIPKNOT and KORN. Why is that? Well, there’s a little bit less “rat-tat-tat” and “Fuck it” anthems and more in your face music that has an ingenious connection. With that said, their ninth studio album and debut under Spinefarm Records, The Poison Red is here on July 8.
The record instantly had me hooked as “Generation Idiot” came on. I said to myself, “Oh, this is going to be a great one!” It makes sense why this was the first song the band released, because it is the strongest. It has everything you can ask for: decent guitar work, a catchy chorus, and one that you would enjoy headbanging and moshing to after hearing live. For those lyrics lovers like me, it speaks the truth about how ridiculous this generation is becoming. Listen to it yourself; you will see and agree.
“Foaming At the Mouth” and “Bottled Up Killer Bees” are both energetic tunes as well that run a similar script. They start with a light guitar riff that blasts into an aggressive melody and at the halfway mark, a guitar solo enters to hold an instrumental shift. Despite the similarity, the melody for both is different. I can easily hear these three songs live, on the radio, or at some summer BBQ. Despite being fun tunes, the lyrics release emotion filled with bottled up anger where you end up “Foaming at the Mouth” with a vengeance.
The album takes a different turn during “Rabbit Hole.” Unless it’s an introduction or offers enhancement, or even a continuous story, this track has neither and does absolutely nothing for me. “Chasing White Rabbits” picks up a bit but sadly, the vocals get a bit too repetitive for my liking. “Standing in the Flesh” brings the album back up a notch as it speaks about regrets. Maintaining with the emotion of pain, “Divided…Conquer Them” comes in next with a slower interlude. My favorite line in this piece is something we all end up thinking about, “Wish we could take it all back.” It’s heartfelt, emotional, and the guitar solo in this piece fits quite well.
The second half of the disc has a few weaker moments with “Radio Chorus,” followed by the eight-second pointless track “Spanish Radio Hour.” Luckily, “El Diablo” comes in next and starts to save this album and you can clearly hear the early 2000’s influence. There are a few parts that remind me of classic ILL NIÑO as well. As the album moves towards the final leg, “No Running Allowed” comes in next. The lyrics sting, as it speaks the bitter truth on the fact that you cannot run away from your pain, you must face it instead. A stronger song than the prior few as the album continues to redeem itself.
The record concludes on a high note with “Be Enough” and the powerful “My Last Dying Breath.” The Poison Red has a few dull moments, but there are quite a few powerful tracks that make this an enjoyable album and well worth the purchase. There’s no doubt in my mind that I’ll enjoy hearing any of these tunes live. NONPOINT is incredible in concert; they are fun, charismatic, and once again they know how to connect with the audience, and that is what The Poison Red does.
STANDOUT TRACKS: “Generation Idiot”, “Divide…Conquer Them”, “No Running Allowed”, “My Last Dying Breath”