The Grammy Nominated Metalcore masters are back with an unbelievable new offering, Meridional. Over the past few years the band has steadily gained a large following by relentlessly touring and releasing no holds barred aggressive metal. With Meridional I feel that Norma Jean has created a true tour de force of a disc. In my opinion, this CD is absolutely the best release of the band’s career.
As a long time fan of the band I was rather excited when I began listening to Meridional. I was quite unprepared for what I found and was floored by the depth and the layers woven into the fabric of each and every song on this disc. While all of the typical elements of a Norma Jean record are present and accounted for, especially the dissonant guitars and Cory Brandan’s trademark vocals, the band has employed many different elements this time out. For one thing there is more melody at work in these songs than on the band’s previous records; especially vocally. Brandan’s intensely passion filled vocals have a way of conveying intense emotion and they drive the record from moments of serene calmness to moments of extreme turbulence. Norma Jean has truly nailed it on Meridional.
The aspect of Meridional that I found the most interesting is that while there are many different elements used in the writing and creating of these songs, no part feels unnatural, out of place or haphazardly thrown in. The entire disc has a very organic feel to it and the overall continuity and fluidity is quite amazing. However complicated and abstract the songs may be they all seem to invite the listener to contemplate the deeper meanings and draw their own conclusions from the songs, making them much more personal.
I realize we are only in July but I feel that Meridonial might very well be one of the best releases of 2010. This is a very good disc and I would recommend it without hesitation. [ END ]
01. Leaderless And Self Enlisted
02. The Anthem Of The Angry Brides
03. Deathbed Atheist
05. A Media Friendly Turn For The Worse
07. Blood Burner
08. High Noise Low Output
09. Falling From The Sky: Day Seven
10. Everlasting Tapeworm
12. The People That Surround You On A Regular Basis
13. Innocent Bystanders Unite
Run Time: 67:26
Release Date: 07.13.2010