We’re going to do things a bit different with Thunder Bay Ontario’s NORRIS. This notorious hardworking DIY band has been raising their profile through their dedication to heavy music and their unique sound, so let’s take a look at THE GREAT WHITE NORTH before going any further:
The first track I want to look at is the title track THE GREAT WHITE NORTH. This is an extremely aggressive and in your face song. The drums dominate the track by adding a level of brutality that rocks your understanding of music. This brutality doesn’t let up until some excellent guitar work and well placed pace changes.
THE DREGS comes next for me with its doomy start that leads to a huge vocal scream. We see more of the sudden and intricate pace changes that add strength to the song. I can only describe the song as a journey through several sounds and influences that each listener will get something different from.
More after the warp:
What turned me on to NORRIS was the song JESUS HEIST and its intense onslaught of noise. The song comes across as very angry with the band getting out their angst through music. The title lets you form your own opinion to the concept of the track and where their ferocity is coming from. The punk overtones of the song add to the pissed off nature of what can only be described as a vicious testament to heavy music.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT features a lot of confusion at the open until the vocals flat out assault you. The song is all over the place once again with pacing and instrumentals. Although very easy to get lost, after a few listens you can grasp onto the song and begin to enjoy it. I really disliked this track the first time I heard it, but during the listening rotation it became my favourite by NORRIS.
The reason I looked at some of the music by NORRIS first was so you could develop your own opinion of what makes them tick and where their music fits in the grand scheme of things. Doing some research on the band you will see people label them as mathcore, technical, experimental, doom, sludge, hardcore, grindcore, and metalcore.
You can argue all of those points, but when it comes down to it the band represents all of those genres on one song or another. Many of my blogging peers and print journalists make statements about not wanting to label music or separate it into genres, but often it’s the first thing we do. What is so interesting about NORRIS is; you can’t do that.
Although it is wonderful that a band like NORRIS can cross so many genres and experiment with so many sounds, it also can be there biggest weakness. It can be difficult to follow the flow of the music in a coherent manner. I would highly recommend NORRIS to broaden your taste in heavy music, but be prepared to invest some time in the material. If you’re willing to do that you will be very pleased with the outcome.
THE GREAT WHITE NORTH for me is exactly like a trip through the barren lands of the north. You may not know where in the hell you’re going, but it’s a sweet journey getting there.
7.5 OUT OF 10 HORNS
Show me your horns,
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