ALBUM: Norma Jean – Meridional

Release Date: July 12th, 2010
Label: Razor & Tie


Having been around for thirteen years already, you wouldn’t go amiss in thinking why aren’t this band bigger than they actually are? Hailing from California, ‘Meridional’ is their fifth studio album and the gauntlet is down because for some reason they’re a band that always seems to slip under the radar every time they release new material.

The opening track doesn’t really do much in terms of giving you an overlook into the whole album, as it is pretty poor. However, the mediocrity stops there though as second track ‘The Anthem Of The Angry Brides’ hits you like a brick to the face. The intricate guitar picks and exploding riff blows you off your proverbial seat, the vocals are as intense as they come and the beatdown is enough to make the earth crumble below you. That is by far the best track, and each other following track is an onslaught upon the eardrums of the listener, with clean vocals showing up a nice contrast and a lighter side to the record.

The interludes and the harmonies carry this on in a confident manner, and then go on to making a damn good metal album by amalgamating all the other parts into a solid effort. The ever graciously named ‘Bastardizer’ starts with a drum solo kind of thing and plenty of high-end guitar notes. It’s a song that the beatdown will definitely lead to plenty of throwdowns in a pit of doom.

I would go as far as to say that this is their best record since their 2002 debut ‘Bless The Martyr And Kiss The Child’, and something which they should almost definitely build upon and showcase their true talent. I would definitely recommend catching them live at any point possible, especially if you’re in the UK. They don’t visit British shores very often.

Written by Dom Wyatt