Hailing from Astoria, NY, Metal/Industrial act Nostrom draws musical inspiration from several different sources, though it is hard to pinpoint exactly which genre, from a fan standpoint, would best suit their efforts going forward.

On the one hand, the band offers tightly compressed rapid-fire percussion over crunchy riff-driven guitars and vocals reminiscent of modern tough-guy hardcore. On the other, the group employs synthesizers to add ambient depth and broaden their sound. Still another element is trying to flesh out an eerie, blackened death metal feel. All this makes for an interesting first few listens, but it seems like the band is trying to cater to too many different crowds at the same time.

Many of the tracks follow a similar theme, with start/stop punctuation and chunky riffs.  There is very little sonic variation from front to back besides the occasional bleeps and beeps that really do wonders adding texture to the songs.

Some of the programming is a bit over the top, but the one thing that really brought this recording down at times was the floppy, farting bass drum beats and the choked, tinny ride cymbal sound that permeates the recordings, especially lead track “Secret Soul.” Let the damn thing breathe, for chrissakes!

Let me say this, though… Nostrom would DEFINITELY be worth checking out in a live setting… at least once. Something tells me, if they are able to keep the energy they bring to this recording and put it onto a stage, they’d be a lot of fun to watch and the crowd would get into it.


-Greg Allis

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