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NiteSoil – Abusement Park

NiteSoil
Abusement Park
by Brian Lowrie at 18 December 2020, 9:34 PM

I’ve cracked jokes in my reviews before regarding the over-saturating of guest musicians in today’s metal scene. Even though they are mostly jokes, I still believe that having a ton of guest musicians (especially guests that are more notoriable than the band itself) tends to be a sign of riding coattails, but I digress. However, I can’t help but be intrigued at the idea of an album with a different vocalist on each song. NiteSoil is a two-man death metal project that aims to do just that, and has made it a mission statement to do so on each release. Sure, it would be easy to write this off as I would have any other release, but allowing the vocalists to have their own creative outlet on entire tracks that would otherwise be out of their style seems more enticing than a 30 second passage that’s already scripted for them (surrounded by an otherwise mediocre myriad of riffs). With that being said, I supposed my main concern with this would be the band losing recognizability due to having a different vocalist on each track.

Opening the EP with “Odio”, featuring vocalist Jessica Pimentel of Brujeria (as well as television’s Orange Is The New Black). The song plays out like a tribute to older grindcore bands while maintaining enough influence from newer school death metal to try to keep it fresh. Even though it’s riffs are a little too consistent throughout, the track remains fun to listen to at some parts more than others. However, Dave Davidson (Revocation) makes an appearance on “The Extinction Gene” and feels much more suited for this style of death metal, taking on a more Aborted style of approach with his lyrical structuring. I found the first half of this track to be a little lacking as well, with the change-ups in the latter half (specifically the last half a minute) to be the more attention grabbing sections that should have seen more focus. Hivesmasher’s Aaron Heinold makes his mark on “Burn Me Down”, a track that has more emphasis on hardcore elements, complete with dissonant breakdowns and a popping snare drum. This track’s more consistent groove led it to be one of my favorite tracks, and I’m even going to look into Hivesmasher’s discography.

Perhaps the most interesting feature on the EP is Trevor Strnad in “The Abusement Park”; If you’re somehow unfamiliar with Strnad’s work with The Black Dahlia Murder, you’ve got about 2 decades of awesome riffs to catch up on. This feature is the most interesting because it honestly doesn’t sound like him at all; starting with a guttural croak that’s uncharacteristic of the work he’s known for, and choosing to stay in the lower end of his range for the duration save for the overlays, I expected a lot more vocal dynamics on his feature specifically. However, it serves it’s purpose, and while I can’t say that Strnad has ever been one of my favorite vocalists, he applies himself well on this track.

I had to do a little internet digging to find out who GosT is, for the track “Mother of Lust”; even thought the synthwave artist who chooses to remain in anonymity isn’t directly known for his voice, everything just clicks when he takes the microphone for Nite Soil; the band sounds like they are having the most fun on this track in specific, and I’m sure GosT feels the same way. The instruments have a fun sense of hedonistic angst that pairs well with the black-metal-centric vocals. “D.S.I.T.S.” sees a bit of a change in direction for vocalists, recruiting Doug Moore of technical death metal act Pyrrhon. Much like Strnad’s appearance, the vocals on this track are lower register and are more drawn out, occassionally resorting to a high-pitched scream in the same tempo. Surprisingly, the instruments aren’t that technical compared to the rest of the EP, leading me to wonder if Moore was a bit underutilized for his role.

I know it sounds like I like to dismiss guest musicians as a means of the band to ride the coattails of other musicians, but that’s simply not the case here. This debut seems to play out more like a bunch of people who are friends who are getting together and just having some fun while the technological tape is rolling. The band have also made it clear that having a different vocalist per track is going to be a recurring theme for each release, which, as evidenced here, will play out as long as the range of said vocalists is pretty wide.

Songwriting: 6
Musicianship: 7
Memorability: 6
Production: 8

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Odio (feat. Jessica Pimentel)
2. The Extinction Gene (feat. Dave Davidson)
3. Burn Me Down (feat. Aaron Heinold)he
4. The Abusement Park (feat. Trevor Strnad)
5. Mother of Lust (feat. GOST)
6. D.S.I.T.S (Feat. Doug
Lineup:
Frank Godla – Drums
Nick Emde – Guitars
Record Label: Independent
     


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