DevinDoesAReview: "Void Eternal" by nothing,nowhere.
Hello everyone! Welcome back to me being a writer. Well, a haphazard writer at any rate. I figured I'd wait to do an album review when one was released that actually inspired me to write about it. And lemme tell you something brother, this brand new nothing,nowhere. album...inspired the shit outta me!
Before I even hit play, I was already feeling a mixture of emotions. I know it sounds strange, but I felt like...actual fear going into this. Not that I was gonna think it was dogshit or anything really, I knew that n,n. was going to release some heat, that wasn't up for debate. But I *was* afraid that the new heavier sound wasn't going to hit the same as his previous album, 2021's masterful Trauma Factory. An album that was so raw and emotionally intense that it could only sound the way it did. So I was a wee bit nervous over whether or not Void Eternal could carry that same weight with a brand new sound.
Well, to quote the late, great dwarven king Thorin Oakenshield...
"I have never been so wrong in all my life..."
The album opens strongly with the track "ANX13TY", leading us in with a pounding riff thats eerily reminiscient to early Linkin Park, or maybe even Deftones. Sporting some serious lyrics, (I start to slip away, and I watch my heart rate dissipate/Every night is another hell, this is my final farewell), this is a great way to set the tone going forward. Also, there is a breakdown in here that I did not expect...and it fucking rips. The following track titled "TRAG3DY" takes an interesting turn, steering us into an emo rock banger that sounds like it could've been released in the early 2010's. This song also has our first of many vocal features, this time in the form of Lorna Shore vocalist Will Ramos. You wouldn't think that Will would be willing to hit one of his trademark lows on an emo rock song, but he fucking nails it. I actually sat up in my seat when his part hit, I was stunned. I knew we were gonna get some heat!
The following two songs, "PSYCHO_PSYCHIATRY", and "CHR0MAKILL3R" did an incredible job of proving to me why Nu-Metal never died, it just evolved. Like a rap rock pokemon. The former song is a personal highlight to me, maybe my favorite on the album. It hits every box on what the genre should, and could be. Hard guitars, a nasty riff, big drums, and turntable scratching. Perfection! And with a killer breakdown performance by Connie from SeeYouSpaceCowboy, this is a live show staple I just know it. While the latter track felt like it could've been a continuation of the vibes on Trauma Factory, as it truly felt like it was bridging the gap between that era and this one. Stellar vocal work on that one too. The hairs on my arm stood up listening to this one at times.
However, the song "SUICIDE_PACT" didn't really do much for me. The riff felt a little too similar to a Silverstein song for me, and even though I absolutely loved the lyrics in the second verse, (Looking back to the past with cataracts/Let it fade 'cause it's never coming back/Losing grip of the memories/I feel like ghosts tryna cut my extremities), it still wasn't enough to keep me invested. I felt the exact opposite on the track "THIRST4VIOLENCE" though! This one is simply a braggadocious, ballsy, Limp Bizkit style banger. The riff *will* fuck your day up, like...I threw out my back listening to this, and I was seated the entire time. Incredible guest spots from rapper Freddie Dredd and Silverstein's Shane Told carry the back end.
The next two tracks, "CYAN1DE" and "ER4SER" perfectly encapsulate the emotional depth that I grew to love from n,n.'s previous releases. The former featuring a big hook, a straightforward instrumental, and a serious poetry passage from Fall Out Boy's very own Pete Wentz, who also hits an *insane* low in the back end. I honestly forgot that he was capable of doing that, I was impressed. The latter track has easily the catchiest hook, and from a delivery standpoint some of the best rapping. Again, it reminds me of some early Linkin Park on some the bars, which I'm always excited for. What I'm loving on these tracks is how well he channels his influences while adding his own personal touches.
"F0RTUNE_TELLER" starts with this lovely chugging riff with these no nonsense drums that slowly build into this awesome two-step groove. You'll definitely move to this one, most likely while crying...The feature from Olli of the band Static Dress was fine, it didn't really do much for me. I only say that because it wasn't on the same level of n,n.'s performance and it didn't really compliment the song enough to me. I felt similarly on the following song "M1SERY_SYNDROME". While I loved the main vocal immensely, I once again didn't care for the feature. Also, the intro to the song sounded like the One Ok Rock track "Save Yourself", which popped me when I first heard it. That's not a negative at all by the way, I thought it was rad!
Which leads us to the song "VEN0M", featuring members of the legendary metalcore outfit Underoath. This song is awesome! This song is killer! This song fucks! I'm going to catch myself singing the hook to myself days from now, I know it. The song sports this wild, almost UK drill type beat that morphs into an alt rock juggernaut. The bridge on this had me on the fucking floor, and it leads into the nastiest breakdown on the entire record, it rules. And album closer "MEMORY_FRACTURE" is perfect. A somber number that does a lovely job of bringing the album, and the experience, to a fitting conclusion. The spoken word segment at the end gave me goosebumps.
nothing,nowhere. said in a tweet on the day of the records release that he is just "a student of music and wanted to make an album that made twelve year old me happy", and if that's what he set out to do, he succeeded. I know your twelve year old self is very proud. This album rules.