new music: metalcore band neurotic november silences the doubters & critics on ‘fighting words’ #soundcheck

September 23, 2015

On their second album, Fighting Words, Neurotic November takes aim at the doubters and critics, powered by the “fuck you I’m awesome” strain of hardcore. Their sound has sharpened since their debut, Anunnaki (which is name-checked in the opening “NNtro”), faster, heavier, and with frontman Dirty’s raps carrying equal weight to his guttural screams. With producer Joey Sturgis in tow, the band adds industrial flourishes to their bag of tricks, making clear that Fighting Words has something to prove.

By Nathan Leigh, AFROPUNK Contributor

Coming out of the gate with one of their most confrontation tracks, “The Truth About You” builds from an electronic intro to full-on assault with Dirty’s opening salvo: “you worthless piece of shit.” Throughout Fighting Words, Dirty comes off as a one man army against the world. Exes, scene kids, rival bands, and former friends are the recipient of his wrath. On breakneck standout “So Hollow,” the unconventional song structure makes the switch between growl and rap exhilarating. The best Neurotic November tracks are the ones where the band’s myriad influences keep the song moving ahead of you; they’re the ones that demand your presence in the pit.

In the back half, Neurotic November stumbles a bit with songs that spend too much time mythologizing themselves as a band. “Wasabi Anguish pt 2” in particular crosses the line between declaration of unflappable determination and resting on laurels. “Making part 2? Kinda ballsy” Dirty says, hanging a lampshade on recording a sequel to their breakout single on the followup record. But you don’t need to tell us how dope you are; just be that dope, we’ll figure it out. Fortunately the songs that hit hit hard, and the band has never sounded tighter. Fighting Words is out now on Victory Records.

Photo by Matt Stokes