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PopMatters Music Short Takes
our brief reviews of new releases
22 December 2003
Ill Nino, Confession (Roadrunner)
New Jersey sextet Ill Nino would like you to believe that they provide some much-needed innovation in contemporary heavy metal music, what with all their Spanish-English lyrics and Latin percussion. However, once you get past the bilingual singing and the samba drums, all you're left with is nothing but more of the same, one-dimensional, maudlin garbage that nu metal bands have been spewing since the late Nineties. The production by Bob Marlette and Dave Chavarri is first-rate, but none of their studio wizardry can save this album, which is mired in boring, sludgy chord structures, weak vocal melodies by singer Christian Machado (yeah, he can carry a tune, but his lifeless hooks just mimic Corey Taylor's equally dull work with Slipknot and Stone Sour), and weepy, hackneyed lyrics that are cringe-inducing ("I loved you/You were all that I wanted/Then, I watched you/Turn into someone else"). Ill Nino mean well, as they try to inject some life into a genre that continues to drive itself into the ground, the best example being the terrific acoustic interlude in "This Time's For Real", but they still have a lot of work to do if they want to match such albums as Sepultura's Roots or Soulfly's Primitive. Spanish or English, it's still lousy.
.: posted by Editor 3:25 PM