Nu Metal was the big thing as a genre of Metal around the dawn of the 21st century. It took a bunch of different musical elements, most notably Rap, and threw it into a mix of dark, heavy music. There were many bands around the time, with Korn leading the pack, who took Nu Metal to an almost mainstream level of popularity at the time. This is Nu Metal outfit Adema’s self-titled debut album. Let’s hear if it is worth a listen today.
Everyone begins with some looped semi-feedback sounds before some punchy guitars and drums enter. This is actually surprisingly good. The singer Mark Chavez puts in quite an excellent performance. Singer from a dark and tortured place, he sounds like a very excellent singer. A really thunderous, powerful and oddly uplifting piece of music, this sounds very promising. There is a low key section with drumbeats and snatches of guitars that sound very cool before the band come crashing back in. Surprisingly good Nu Metal, this is deep and disturbing music, but very good. A very good start to the album, and very relatable lyrics for those who dig Nu Metal. The song ends with the looped semi-feedback sounds once again.
Blow It Away begins with some weird electronics, before going straight into a thunderous piece of music that sounds intense. The riffs on this song are enormous and powerful. Mark Chavez’s singing is very cool and different from many vocalists out there, in a way, he sounds really cool. This song is electrifying and disturbing and just sounds really great musically. The breakdown is very percussion-driven, before launching back into the crashing and twisted action. Definitely underrated listening, this sounds dark but really awesome. Great job.
Giving In begins with some melodic and clean guitar parts, before bass guitar and pounding drums enter. This is certainly not cheerful sounding music, it just sounds really intense and emotional. The singing on this song is very personal sounding, and the screaming and loud guitars are surprisingly good. A very nice and well-done piece of music, this is music that you need to hear after a horrible day, as a cathartic release. This sounds surging and wonderful in a way, and the wah-wah guitar solo is different. In any case, this song is a great listen and is one of the most popular Adema songs. The borderline wailing screams by Mark Chavez is really excellent. A great listen, nice to hear.
Freaking Out begins with some awesome funky riffing, along with some excellent musicianship from Adema. This is a very superb and underrated piece of music that sounds really awesome, energetic and is a very personal piece lyrically. This is a good song to listen to when the darkest of moods strikes and deserves credit in this sense. There is a fantastic midsection that has super catchy guitar riffs and there are drug references aplenty in this song. An excellent song for what this is, Adema are one of the more underrated bands out there. A good tune from start to finish, this is a really captivating listen. Nice work.
The Way You Like It begins with processed drum beats, electrifying guitars and a great groove about this song. This is the most popular song from the album and is very Poppy and although it was no doubt a song appreciated in Nu Metal circles, it is likely not the best song on the album. Still, there is no doubt that this is a decent effort, although it sounds very satanic and has a load of profanities. In any case, this is a fairly good effort and is able to be appreciated. It has a lot of melancholy based reflection throughout, which is an acquired taste, to be fair. Good song, though perhaps not a great song. It ends with ear-piercing feedback from guitars.
Close Friends is next, with some weird processed wah-wah guitars in the intro, before launching into a more straightforward Nu Metal groove. Mark Chavez puts in a really cool performance and is a very good vocalist. The song is about lies and betrayal with close friends and is quite dark and morbid. In any case, this is quite intense listening and is only really recommended for Metalheads who value music that is more deep and disturbing than anything Nirvana ever did. Still, some outside of the Nu Metal fanbase could appreciate this, given a chance. Regardless, another good effort and an interesting listening experience.
Do What You Want To Do begins with great-sounding drop-tuned guitars, pounding drums and some deep vocals. This one sounds a little different in comparison to the other songs before it, due to the audibly loud snare drum sound. It is obviously a clear ode to hedonism and other self-oriented ways but sounds deep, dark and heavy all the same. Quite a good song, and another worthy addition to this album. There are some rather strange overdubs of a banjo or mandolin style instrument in the midsection before the whole thing returns in a chaotic way. A short song that is very much a mission statement. Great to hear.
Skin begins with some reversed vocal sounds, before launching into a very unusual Nu Metal piece with some more personal vocals to listen to. Before long, lashings of loud and heavy metal styled guitars enter, which sound very good. This is a song about relationship issues and has some great drumming throughout. A cleverly thought out and decent musical piece, this is good music to listen to and sounds powerful and dramatic. There is a deep trend of paranoia and loathing in the lyrics of this album, which are nicely encapsulated by Mark Chavez. Decent tune.
Pain Inside has some violining guitars, followed by some flanger treated vocals. It quickly launches into a rather ordinary piece of music that, frankly, could have been better. The chorus is typical Nu Metal that is pounding and chaotic. This is a difficult song to listen to, especially on a lyrical level. It’s above average, but not by a great deal. It sounds somewhat experimental but in a mixed bag of results. The guitar work throughout is quite impressive, but otherwise, the song is not the greatest. The song finishes with singing about the problems that one faces daily. A fairly ordinary effort on this album.
Speculum begins with some bass drum beats and electronic textures, before leading into another dark, doomy and morbid piece of music. This is music for those who have a warped imagination, it sounds really heavy and this sort of music is not recommended for those who like easy listening music. In any case, the song is good but not phenomenal. The lyrics are deeply messed up and personal, and no doubt will appeal to those who are fans of Metal and Nu Metal out there. There is a rather basic guitar solo to listen to here, before going back into the verses. A dark and moody piece of music, it ends with sustained guitar chords.
Drowning begins with rolling drumbeats and muted bass guitar playing. It quickly goes into a rather uptempo and catchy tune that sounds really cool. This is one of the more underrated songs from this album, and definitely has a good amount of musical quality about it. The lyrics deal with pain, misery and suffering directly, and is really not recommended for those who are super young, or your grandparents for the matter. A very much mosh pit sort of song, this sounds epic. A piece that sounds like a punch in the face, this is interesting listening. It ends with chaotic musical sounds before launching straight into the next track.
Trust is the last song on this album. It begins with some electronically processed drum beats, before going straight into a rather catchy and interesting song. The music sounds really intense and dramatic, and there seems to be a bit more emphasis on sonics rather than songwriting and musical flow on this tune. The lyrics are about trust issues, which is fairly easy to guess about. This piece sounds a bit more Pop oriented than some of the other efforts on this album. Still, the downtuned guitars sound very Nu Metal in amongst some of the seemingly autotuned vocals. A good and semi-singalong piece for one to enjoy if you enjoy your Metal. The outro has some Nine Inch Nails styled sounds and feel to it, which is an extended song section. It ends with acoustic guitars and clanging piano, and we finish there.
This is a good, but not a great album to represent a mixed bag of how Nu Metal can sound. There are some good songs, some passable songs and some rather horrid moments to listen to. Still, if you like Heavy Metal and dig bands like Korn and similar Nu Metal acts, this is recommended for you. Otherwise, it is a fairly average album that has many of the tracks sounding too similar to each other. The vocals are very good though by Mark Chavez, and the band do deserve credit for making this an interesting listen, even if the quality isn’t always the greatest.
Dark and demonic.
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