MeNTaL GLooM – DeNaCi (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

MeNTaL GLooM is perhaps the perfect name for this album of ten songs, for even in its seemingly more upbeat moments the music is swathed in a sort of claustrophobic and negatively charged fug. How much of what follows is from personal experience and how much is creative narrative, we will never know, but it is safe to say that DeNaCi isn’t that content with the world around him.

Although the album kicks off with the raucous, metal onslaught of RAGE, again a perfectly named track, that makes a stance for being oblivious to the critique and opinions of others, from there it follows some interesting dynamics paths, wandering between highly charged highs and more soulful, sonic lulls.

As the next two songs neatly show. 420 is built of rock riff and riotous rhythm somehow blending energy and entropy in equal measure and then the following track, NowADayS, sits somewhere between nu-soul and the more psychedelic end of old school hip-hop. And by contrast, ZoMbiE is a searing, snarling, tsunami of shock rock and horror-themed metal riffs, thunderous drums and vocals which seem to be drowning in the dark atmospheres being summoned up.

Nuthin’ 2 LoSe, is perhaps the most interesting track here, especially given the bombastic music that it finds itself surrounded by. A sort of alt-pop, funky groover, which if tidied up a bit could very well find itself picked up by the more discerning mainstream crowd and underground urban alternatives alike. The album ends with EmPTy, a sort of reflective lament on life, a spoken word stream of consciousness put to some strange and beguiling electronic soundscapes.

MeNTaL GLooM is an album with much to say but it does its talking through the passions and emotions which often race or sometimes meander through the songs, the direct communications of the vocals often getting lost in the sonic maelstrom which is being whipped up around it. But then music has always been about feelings and interpretation.

You could make an argument for the vocals being stronger but I would say that it is the fact that they come from a real place that adds to the earthy and honest nature of the album. Again, this is about raw, unbridled emotion rather than perfectly honed styles and over-production.

But more than anything, it is a window into one person’s view on the world, both the real world and a more heightened, imaged once, and often the blend of analogies and inspirations which forge something out of the lyrical ground between.

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