Nothing More is a bit of a paradox of a band. On one hand, they fit well with the “hard rock” scene, with catchy choruses that would blend in on standard rock radio stations and such. But on the other hand, their music goes so much deeper than that, with intricately woven guitar licks, progressive all-out jam sessions, and almost djent-like guitar tones. This plays to their advantage on their self-titled, 17 track album which flip flops to different styles and overtones quite schizophrenically.
The record opens with ambient intro “Ocean Floor,” which directly leads into the damn near perfect “This is The Time (Ballast).” The song is equally catchy and progressive- a rare feat for many bands of this style. Musically, this album destroys. The guitar work is especially impeccable, employing the use of airy, hard-hitting effects mixed with mind bending lead riffs. Lyrically is where things get interesting. There’s so many moments of “wait, did he actually just say that?” interspersed throughout the album. I prefer lyrics to be less blatant, so I feel more of a connection to the songs on this record that hold metaphorical value.
Standout track “First Punch” is a hit waiting to happen, with soaring vocals and the brutally infectious chorus of “I’ll throw the first punch/Because I’ve kept my mouth shut/For far too long, Enough’s enough.” Nothing More attempts to spread a very Rage Against the Machine-esque message throughout their songs, and it shows in their music as well when they incorporate the whammy guitar effects and the occasional Zack de la Rocha-esque vocals.
My personal favorite song on the record, “If I Were,” is by far the most dynamic and punch-packing track and is sure to nestle itself into many running playlists in the future. My only gripe with this album is that’s its just a bit too long. There’s definitely some A+ material here, but it’s surrounded by some B minuses and C’s (“Sex and Lies,” for example) which creates an awkward dip in quality at some points. A few songs should definitely have been cut from the final product. Other than that, however, this is a fantastic aggressive rock record that manages to be original and accessible at the same time and I’m excited to see what musical territory Nothing More explores after this.