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40 Grit (USA) - 2003 - "Nothing to Remember"
(49 min, Metal Blade)

Track List:
1. Intro 1:15
2. No Giving In 2:51
3. Bomb Bottom 3:26
4. Only Human 3:33
5. Last Time Around 3:31
6. Pieces 4:03
7. Because of You 4:04
8. Nothing to Remember 4:17
9. Serenity Reigns 4:27
10. Higher Tides 3:53
11. A Part of Me 4:10
12. Taken Aside 3:21
13. Pull Out 6:51

All tracks: by 40 Grit.


James Santiago - vocals; guitar
Chris Anderson - guitar; vocals
Kevin Young - bass
Andy Green - drums

Produced by 40 Grit & J. Urteaga.
Engineered by J. Urteaga at "Trident" St., CA.

Preamble. What can I say here but a banality? This is my first acquaintance with the music of 40 Grit.

The Album. As well as in the case of another US band God Dethroned, the new CD of which I've lately reviewed, there are the two singing guitarists in 40 Grit. However, there is nothing common between the vocal palette of this album and that by the aforementioned band. There are no brutal shades in the vocals of both of Juan and Chris (see line-up above), and most of the vocal parts here are of a distinctive dramatic character, as well as most of the instrumental arrangements on the album, though. Musically, "Nothing to Remember" is quite a diverse album. The only instrumental piece on it: Intro (1) is just a spacey-like intro to the song: No Giving In (2), which sounds as a logical continuation of it. Furthermore the main theme of the album's opening track appear from time to time on this song as well. Stylistically, precisely half of the songs on "Nothing to Remember" represent Classic Doom-Metal of a proto-progressive character. These are No Giving In, Bomb Bottom, Only Human, Higher Tides, Taken Aside, and Pieces (tracks 3, 4, 10, 12, & 6 respectively), though the latter of them contains also the bits of symphonic music. All of these songs are very impressive and highly original, and it would be absolutely pointless to compare the music of 40 Grit to that of Black Sabbath (or any other band). Indeed, Black Sabbath are the Godfathers of most, if not all, of the true Metal-related sub-genres, etc, which, however, by no means implies that most of the Metal-related bands are obviously influenced by them. Back to the album, apart from the riffs and solos of electric guitars and the parts of rhythm section, the instrumental arrangements on the remaining six songs feature also the parts (passages, solos, and rhythms) of either both of acoustic and semi-acoustic guitar or only those of the latter. The episodes featuring exclusively acoustic textures are present on four of them: Because of You, Nothing to Remember, Serenity Reigns, and A Part of Me (7 to 9, & 11). The music on the first two of them, and also on Pull Out (13), represents a real Progressive Doom-Metal with elements of a guitar-based Art-Rock and the bits of Symphonic Art-Rock. The alternation of heavy and light musical structures is typical for Last Time Around and the album's title track (5 & 8), both of which are about a unique and very well balanced fusion of Progressive Doom-Metal and a guitar-based Art-Rock. The structural analysis of A Part of Me (11) shows that this song doesn't contain any heavy elements at all and is about an amazing guitar-based Art-Rock with elements of Symphonic Art-Rock. Finally, the passages of synthesizer are recognizable on most of the tracks on the album, while on Intro, Pieces, Last Time Around, A Part of Me, and Pull Out (1, 5, 6, 11, & 13) they are more than merely evident.

Summary. Highly recommended to all those who know to whom I speak to, and not only.

VM: March 17, 2003

Related Links:

40 Grit
Metal Blade Records


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