"Soulblend" (Bodhisattva Records
Untitled Demo (Self-produced)
Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton
This new 6-track demo by N-Cyde, recorded with Eddy Garcia (Pissing Razors), is more proof that this band is on the cutting edge of heavy metal without slipping off the blade and becoming something different. They take some chances, but they do so carefully. In other words, they don't start off calling themselves a metal band and then slip into some other hybrid genre instead.
That being said, it is a little disconcerting to hear this new demo begin with a cover of Simple Mind's "Don't You Forget About Me." Why? Well, at first listen, it seems to be a pretty tame cover. But then the chorus comes along and that's when N-Cyde goes to work, giving this apparently mild little cover just enough bite to make it stand out.
The remaining five songs are N-Cyde originals and each burns with the drive and the power that N-Cyde delivered with their first recording. "Beneath Desire" with a rolling drum solo that builds into a monster Iron Maiden-type riff. "Selfdead" is up next and this one has more in common with Slipknot than Iron Maiden; it's a speed monster that just flings itself violently out of your speakers. But it's got interesting breaks, too, that throw off your equilibrium just enough to make you feel a little uneasy.
Track #4 is entitled "Singularity," and, for its first few moments, it sounds almost like one of those ballads made so popular in the 80s. But it doesn't take long before it kicks into gear with a throbbing bass, solid guitars and a driving pace. The vocals on this one are a little different than the rest of the album - demonic without falling over into death metal territory.
"Leech" follows and its an awesome, spiraling guitar number that is the musical equivalent of a power drill. Combined with background vocals that sound like the cries of the damned you heard in the "Doom" video game, "Leech" is one of the CDs strongest points.
The final track, "No Return," also begins atmospherically, then bleeds over into almost industrial territory. Once again, guitars save this one, making it the kind of song they should include in the next "Matrix" movie soundtrack.
N-Cyde continue to impress with their impossible-to-label music. It's hard and it's heavy, but it never goes too far. With N-Cyde, that's a sign of a band that knows how far is far enough.
For more information, please visit the band's website at http://www.n-cyde.com.
"Soulblend" (Bodhisattva Records)
Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton
If you like it heavy, you're gonna love N-Cyde.
This is one band that plays it like they want to play it and damn the rules. N-Cyde plays with a Pantera-like fury but their songwriting is so different from that band that to compare the two is almost impossible.
The guitars are angry, the drums are brutal and the vocals vary from glass-gargling banshee howls to scary monster sing-song in the space of just a few seconds.
But, again, it's the songwriting that makes N-Cyde so unique. The band obviously has many influences - from the above-mentioned Pantera to Machine Head to even Slayer. Their songwriting gathers snippets from all of the above and so many more and then twists them into the sound that is N-Cyde.
It's not new metal and it's definitely not old-school metal, but N-Cyde is heavy metal, make no mistake about it.
N-Cyde is: Todd Brashear, Les Huber, Chris Huber, Derrick Richards.
For more information, please visit http://www.n-cyde.com.
A classic. This record will kick your ass.
Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.
So-so. You've heard better.
Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.
Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.
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Revised: 05 Jun 2016 11:41:11 -0400.