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Statement Review

by Alex Henderson

Combining rapping and singing isn't anything new for metal bands; Anthrax and the Red Hot Chili Peppers were doing it in the mid-'80s (a time that also found Run-D.M.C., the Beastie Boys, and other trailblazing MCs rhyming to metal guitars). But the practice became even more common in the 1990s, when a lot of young headbangers were quick to point out that hip-hop and rock played equally important roles in their lives -- if Metallica and Suicidal Tendencies weren't in their CD players, the Wu-Tang Clan and Snoop Doggy Dogg were. Released in 2000, Nonpoint's Statement very much reflects a time when metalheads grew up being obsessed with hip-hop. Most of the CD is forceful, abrasive rap-metal along the lines of (hed)p.e., Korn, and Limp Bizkit; blistering tunes like "Endure" and "Back Up" aren't terribly original, but they're still infectious. Even when acknowledging that Nonpoint isn't the most innovative or distinctive band in the world, it's easy to appreciate the band's intensity and get caught up in its bone-crushing, in-your-face, rap-metal groove. Lyrically, "Orgullo" is a departure from the album's other tracks because it finds lead vocalist Elias Soriano (who is Puerto Rican) singing and rapping in Spanish. But musically, "Orgullo" is quite comparable to the English language material that dominates Statement. Some non-Latinos will be surprised to hear a rap-metal offering with Spanish lyrics, although serious aficionados of rock en EspaƱol will point out that Latin America has its share of Korn and Limp Bizkit disciples who sing and rap in Spanish exclusively. Again, Nonpoint won't win any awards for innovation. But despite its limitations and its derivative nature, Statement gives listeners an exhilarating dose of rap-metal bombast.

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