Nonpoint – “X” (Spinefarm Records)
“X” – ? Well, yeah, it’s album number 10 for this nu metal crew that have been going for just over 2 decades. With over one million albums sold worldwide, their cover of Phil Collins ‘In The Air Tonight’ used in the soundtrack to the 2016 movie “Miami Vice”, a discography of billboard charting albums while sharing stages with Megadeth, Papa Roach and Stone Sour to name but a few, it’s pretty hard to ignore Nonpoint despite their name. Melding a fusion of styles from groove to rap to nu metal, founder Elias Soriano is almost possessing in his captivating rhymes, stylings and street raps as the guitars of Rasheed Thomas and B.C. Kochmit soar and shred through massively catchy grooves, aggressive at times while mellow during other moments, but always colluding with Soriano to ensure a maximum effect on the highly memorable 10 tracks here. While not being a big nu metal fan, I really enjoyed this album and that’s a real testimony to Nonpoint’s capability that it stays long in the mind – that’s if you can actually put down “X” – this being my 6th consecutive listen ha ha! Seasoned veterans, Nonpoint’s material is not just composed expertly but actually reflects the feeling of the band themselves, so clearly it’s personal for these dudes. Comparable to bands like Drowning Pool and Hed PE, the tracks vary from heavy to more mellower grooves and right from the off, “X” takes a hold of you and doesn’t let go like on the furious ‘Dodge Your Destiny’ with its speed and chopping beats as Soriano runs riot before the screaming chorus hits home amid a crescendo of riffs, wailing metallic guitar and percussion including tabla drums – wow. With their experience of shaking stadiums and festivals comes the slow crowd rocker ‘Wheel Of Will’ with its inducing power riffs, tribal drumming and crowd shout outs led once again by Soriano’s oh so slick rhymes contrasted by some melodic hard rock soloing – can’t wait to see the waves of arms air punching to this one! Utterly possessing me and completing the trick was the electricity of ‘Crash’ with its hard stomping core beats and raw machine gun raps from Soriano shifting with trippy, laid back pieces but always kept busy by the guitars constantly injecting breaks, licks and melodies – unbelievable. Amazing as it may seem, some people have suggested that Nonpoint have slowed down but what these fools don’t realise is that this band will never stop, and their legacy has only grown with “X”.