Album Review – Nervosa / Downfall Of Mankind (2018)

Slam into the pit to another killing hardcore thrashing bulldozer by Brazil’s meanest all-female Thrash Metal commando unit.

After two long years, here they finally are the unrelenting Brazilian all-female Thrash Metal commando unit Nervosa with a brand new and devastating album titled Downfall Of Mankind, delivering their usual raw aggression and untamed power throughout the album’s almost 50 minutes split into 14 compositions (including the limited edition bonus track) of killing hardcore thrash. In addition, the follow-up to their sensational 2016 release Agony marks their first with drummer Luana Dametto (who also plays drums for Brazilian Death Metal squad Apophizys), adding an extra touch of pugnacity to the band’s already heavier-than-hell and faster-than-a-bullet musicality and, therefore, providing lead singer and bassist Fernanda Lira and guitarist Prika Amaral all they need to keep haunting the souls of the lighthearted with their Thrash Metal tempest.

Downfall Of Mankind perfectly captures the live energy and the old school character that defines this São Paulo-based band without neglecting the strengths of a modern, compact soundscape, bringing the most pulverizing and sharp elements from all types of extreme music such as Thrash, Death and Black Metal, but of course always being deeply rooted in our beloved Bay Area Thrash sound. Featuring a demonic artwork by Brazilian artist Hugo Silva (Abracombie Ink), and with guest musicians João Gordo (Ratos de Porão), Rodrigo Oliveira (Korzus) and Michael Gilbert (Flotsam & Jetsam) providing their share of insanity and rage to Nervosa’s music, Downfall Of Mankind is definitely one of those albums that will inspire you to slam into the circle pit and bang your head like a maniac, two of the main goals in our good old Thrash Metal,  becoming a permanent part of your most metallic playlist.

An ominous intro takes us to the demonic realm ruled by Nervosa, who don’t waste a single second and start crushing our skulls with their ruthless Thrash Metal in Horrordome, with newcomer Luana simply demolishing her drums while Fernanda delivers her already classic she-demon gnarls. This berserk tune will surely generate some interesting mosh pits during their live concerts, which is also the case in Never Forget, Never Repeat, sounding even more devilish and pulverizing and showcasing the band’s heavy artillery at its finest. Prika seems to be mastering “the art of the riff”, delivering sheer brutality in a well-balanced fusion of Thrash and Death Metal, all complemented by the song’s utterly austere, old school lyrics (“Tyranny, bigotry / Crimes against humanity / Murder, persecution / Inprisonment subordination / Enough of genocides / Enough of bloodshed / Break this perpetration / Of history’s dark past”). Then toning down a bit their rage but still sounding brutal, the power trio blasts more of their thrashing music with their riffs and beats generating a menacing wall of sounds in Enslave, followed by Bleeding, presenting hints of the contemporary music by Cannibal Corpse (which is obviously a good thing) and with Fernanda taking her growls to a deeper, more hellish level, while Luana proves why she was the perfect choice as their new drummer.

After such level of destruction, get ready for an 80’s-inspired (or I should say old school Metallica-inspired) Thrash Metal attack by those three she-devils titled …And Justice For Whom?, where the unstoppable beats by Luana dictate the rhythm while Prika continues with her shredding onrush. Needless to say, I can’t wait to see them playing this one live. And Fernanda’s rumbling bass ignites a dark, mid-tempo tune beautifully titled Vultures, a good song to break your neck headbanging with Prika once again delivering cutting riffs from start to finish (despite the fact the song could have been a little shorter, though), whereas Kill The Silence brings a classic Nervosa sonority in terms of its pace, riffs and lyrics, led by the slashing guitar lines by Prika while Fernanda keeps growling and gnarling like a beast, therefore keeping the album at a truly high level of aggressiveness. Their sonic insanity goes on in No Mercy, a more rhythmic and groovy circle pit-generator with highlights to the solid job done by Luana on drums, and Raise Your Fist!, a rebellious anthem by Nervosa bringing forward an inspirational intro with historic speeches about freedom, gender equality and equal opportunities for all, such as the timeless one by Martin Luther King, Jr., sounding melodic, violent and electrifying, all at the same time. In other words, let’s all raise our fists up in the air to this insurgent hymn by Nervosa.

Downfall Of Mankind/Limited Edition Digipack CD Fan Package

And Nervosa still have energy left for more devastation, starting with the berserk Fear, Violence And Massacre, blending the most pulverizing elements from Thrash, Death and even Black Metal, with Prika firing an awesome, melodic guitar solo halfway through it, not to mention you’ll definitely feel the urge to scream the words “fear, violence and massacre” together with Fernanda; whereas although Conflict is a decent creation by the girls, it’s a bit too generic compared to the rest of the album. There’s a lot of good stuff in the song, though, such as the incendiary riffs by Prika and its frenzied pace. The last track from the regular version of Downfall Of Mankind is the superb Cultura do Estupro, with the iconic vocalist João Gordo (Ratos de Porão) sharing the vocal duties with Fernanda in the only song of the album entirely sung in Brazilian Portuguese. I really hope João joins Nervosa during some of their live concerts to sing this cataclysmic, acid tune, with Luana sounding simply demented behind her drums. Lastly, as a bonus track to the limited edition version of the album we have Selfish Battle, featuring Rodrigo Oliveira (Korzus) on drums and Michael Gilbert (Flotsam & Jetsam) providing a nice guitar solo in a slightly different version of Nervosa, feeling more like a heavier version of 80’s Hard Rock the likes of Warlock thanks mainly to the high-pitched vocals by Fernanda.

One can never get enough of Nervosa, and if you’re already addicted to their incendiary music go check what they’re up to on Facebook and purchase your copy of Downfall Of Mankind from their own BandCamp page or from several other locations such as the Napalm Records webstore, where you can get the deluxe fan package featuring the limited edition digipack, a cover flag, a patch, leather wriststraps and a tote bag. Also, don’t forget to watch the track by track breakdown of the album by the girls on YouTube (part 1 and part 2), and obviously to keep an eye on their official website and Facebook page for whenever they take your hometown by storm. Downfall Of Mankind once again proves that thrashing like there’s no tomorrow is Nervosa’s business, and they don’t need any guy to make sure that their business continues to be more than good.

Best moments of the album: Horrordome, Never Forget, Never Repeat, …And Justice For Whom? and Cultura do Estupro.

Worst moments of the album: Vultures and Conflict.

Released in 2018 Napalm Records

Track listing
1. Intro 1:12
2. Horrordome 3:17
3. Never Forget, Never Repeat 4:40
4. Enslave 3:15
5. Bleeding 3:47
6. …And Justice For Whom? 3:34
7. Vultures 4:09
8. Kill The Silence 3:29
9. No Mercy 3:40
10. Raise Your Fist! 4:04
11. Fear, Violence And Massacre 3:35
12. Conflict 2:59
13. Cultura do Estupro (feat. João Gordo) 3:10

Limited Edition/Digipak bonus track
14. Selfish Battle (feat. Michael Gilbert & Rodrigo Oliveira) 3:26

Band members
Fernanda Lira – lead vocals, bass
Prika Amaral – guitar, backing vocals
Luana Dametto – drums

Guest musicians
João Gordo – additional vocals on “Cultura do Estupro”
Michael Gilbert – guitar solo on “Selfish Battle”
Rodrigo Oliveira – drums on “Selfish Battle”

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Album Review – My Dear Addiction / Kill The Silence (2016)

This electric Swedish act is back and absolutely psyched up to kill the silence with more of their dynamic and melodic Metalcore.

Rating5

MDA-Kill_The_Silence-albumcoverHailing from the city of Älmhult, Sweden, around 500km southwest of the capital Stockholm (by the way, it was in Älmhult that the first IKEA store was built), the competent Melodic Metalcore five-piece band My Dear Addiction is back in action with their second full-length album, entitled Kill The Silence. And I might add that silence is the only thing you’ll definitely not find in this storm of ten high-speed and intense tunes thoroughly put together by this electric Swedish act.

With over a decade of experience, having released their debut album New Blood back in 2010 and having already played alongside bands such as Scar Symmetry and Dead By April over the years, My Dear Addiction returned to The Panic Room, the same studio where their first album was born in Sweden, to record Kill The Silence. Featuring a subtly dark artwork by Carl Blekkmark, from Blekkmark Design Studio (who has already worked with renowned artists such as Yngwie Malmsteen, Richie Sambora, Paul McCartney and Stephen King), Kill The Silence has everything Metalcore fans can expect from an album, delivering a strong message through each and every song.

The atmospheric and modern title-track Kill the Silence ignites the album by blending American Metalcore with the Gothenburg sound, with lead singer Kim Lindstén providing a good balance between clean vocals and harsh screams. A Promise is a lot heavier than the opening track thanks to the ferocious riffs by guitarists Christoffer Holm and Ludvig Blaesild, which add a lot of fuel to this excellent Melodic Death Metal tune; whereas in the upbeat chant Winners, drummer Peter Parkeborn pounds his drums mercilessly while Kim delivers a solid performance enhanced by the positive message from the song’s lyrics.

Beautiful is another great display of contemporary Metalcore, with its cheerful lyrics (“You are beautiful for what you are / Eyes will see / This will reach their heart / This is the song for a new start”) getting even more expressive due to the song’s background effects and powerful guitar lines. But it’s when those Swedes get faster and heavier that their music gains some considerable punch, which is the case in the thrilling Unbreakable, a song to bang your head and slam into the pit with your friends. As expected from any European band, they have a strong and noticeable melodic vein feeding their music, with the guitars by Christoffer and Ludvig burning bright and leading that harmonious torrent.

MDA-01Very melodic and with lots of breaks and variations, Always Around You sounds like a more progressive version of Metalcore, with bassist Johannes Nordigårds smashing his chords and consequently increasing the song’s impact, followed by All White, which despite losing some of its grip after a while is pretty decent in the end anyway. Furthermore, I’m not sure who’s responsible for the keyboards in the entire album, but he or she does an amazing job crafting a metallic and eerie ambience in almost all songs.

Veins, the shortest of all tracks, offers the listener the sheer violence found in Melodic Death Metal with smoother passages from Metalcore, especially in regards to the vocal lines by Kim, which should work pretty well if played live. And Face It and Rewind, although weaker than most tracks of the album, still presents solid guitar lines and sharp beats that prevent it from letting the energy level go down in Kill the Silence. Last but not least, Our Fire Inside has a Linkin Park-ish vibe in the beginning that suddenly morphs into heavy and aggressive Metalcore with some futuristic elements added to it, with highlights to its rhythm and groove, perfect for some crazy headbanging.

If you’re a diehard Metalcore fan, I truly recommend you go after the work by My Dear Addiction, either by getting in touch with them through their Facebook page or by enjoying their music through their YouTube channel. And you can obviously purchase Kill the Silence, available for streaming in its entirety HERE, at their official BandCamp page, on iTunes, on Amazon, and several other locations. Luckily for all of us, My Dear Addiction is not just back with a brand new album, but absolutely psyched up to kill the silence with more of their dynamic and melodic Metalcore.

Best moments of the album: A Promise, Winners and Unbreakable.

Worst moments of the album: All White and Face It and Rewind.

Released in 2016 Dead End Exit Records

Track listing
1. Kill the Silence 3:51
2. A Promise 3:38
3. Winners 3:17
4. Beautiful 3:31
5. Unbreakable 3:00
6. Always Around You 4:00
7. All White 3:57
8. Veins 2:42
9. Face It and Rewind 3:53
10. Our Fire Inside 4:24

Band members
Kim Lindstén – vocals
Christoffer Holm – guitar
Ludvig Blaesild – guitar
Johannes Nordigårds – bass
Peter Parkeborn – drums