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Killer CDs: Nonpoint – Recoil
By antiGUY

I’ve never been a big fan of the nu-metal movement. Of course, with any genre there are always bands that stand apart from the pack and standout and while the other bands are relegated to the ash heap of “where are they now?”, a few standout bands have the music that allows them to stay relevant even after the trend has died. Nonpoint is one such band. 

I keep waiting for them to disappoint me, but even now with this their third CD, where most bands become stale, Nonpoint manage to remain captivating and demonstrate musical growth. And as their contemporaries are dropping like flies and settling for indie deals, Nonpoint managed to buck the trend and wound up on Lava / Atlantic.  There is a good reason for this--the songs are there. 

One thing that has really set Nonpoint apart is that they have found a happy middle ground between dynamics and melody. This is one band that has never been afraid to prove that they are real musicians and never let themselves be pigeon holed into a stale formula, instead they adopt elements of various genres and influences to create their sound.  Some bands go for pure heaviness and other strive for melody, Nonpoint manage to never compromise melody for heaviness sake, in fact their heaviness is driving force behind their melodies, because of the dynamics they employ.  Instead of simply throwing drop-tuned power chords at the listener, they actually take the old school approach of incorporating lead guitars into the mix (not just the rhythm guitars we hear from so many nu-metal bands).  That gives Nonpoint more in common with the more recent work of Anthrax than a band like Korn. 

They keystone to any heavy band is their rhythm section and Nonpoint excel in that department as well. While you won’t find the dynamics of say Dream Theater, Nonpoint could give any nu-metal band a run for their money when it comes to delivering the bottom end with dynamics. 

Nonpoint’s last album Development was aptly titled as it showcased a band that was developing. The same can be said about Recoil, although the evolution this time isn’t as dramatic, the band took the best elements of Development and expand upon them with this new CD. 

“The Same” is the perfect opening track for the CD as it highlights the band’s strong points and provides a powerful and captivating melody that is sure to grab the listener’s attention. Elias once again shows that he can wail with the best of them, and the rap-rock formula from the band’s first CD is long gone. 

“Broken Bones” kick things into the heavier reaches of metal and again, the band never compromises melody for power. “Wait” showcases the band’s dynamics but is also Elias’ shining moments on the CD where his able to straddle power vocals with a more restrained delivery.  On the band’s last CD, Elias won me over with his vocal dexterity, this time he does himself one better. While he is not a multi-octave singer, he does something much more difficult, he retains total control even at his most powerful moments. Where most vocalists would take the leap over the cliff into full scream, Elias keeps it in check but still provides the power and intensity the moment calls for. 

“Rabia” demonstrates the band’s two key influences, metal and Spanish music. “Done It Anyway” melds some punk into the mix with more traditional metal. The next track, will have many people scratching their head. It’s a cover of Phil Collins’ “In The Air Tonight”, not something you’d expect a nu-metal band to attempt but unlike Coal Chamber’s attempt at “Shock the Monkey”, Nonpoint deliver an exceptional cover that is paradoxically true to the original but still undeniably original. This track is a testament to Elias’ vocal ability. 

“Peace Of Mind” may be the song where Nonpoint stick closer to the nu-metal formula but at the same time they give the genre more dynamics and dramatic changes then we are used to hearing, so it works well for them. 

For the next song “Past It All” show us their more introspective and melodic side. It’s the closest they come to a power-ballad, although the verses tend to be more captivating then the choruses, in other words the chorus hooks are more low-key and aren’t the hook happy formula you’d expect from a power-ballad. But the song is a nice demonstration of the band’s musical range. 

Finally “Reward” is the perfect closing for the CD, it highlights the band’s heavy and light personality and leave things on a high note. 

Of course, if you keep listening you get a real bonus track, a hidden acoustic version of “Past It All” and this version actually works better because the choruses are allowed to be the centerpiece without the verses overpowering them. 

All in all, Nonpoint have once again done themselves proud and offer us a compelling glimpse into their development as a band. Longtime fans should be pleased and there are plenty of attractive elements to Nonpoint to appeal to a wider audience.  If you have missed the boat with this band up to this point, Recoil is the perfect opportunity to right that wrong. This CD is definitely on the recommend list for those that are into heavier rock. 

CD Info 

Nonpoint – Recoil 
Label: Lava /Atlantic
Same, The
Truth, The
Broken Bones
Done It Anyway
In The Air Tonight
Move Now
Peace Of Mind
Past It All
Impossible Needs
Side With The Guns
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