Nu metal soothes the savage teenage ego. Perfected by the awful Linkin Park, nu metal themes revolve around awkwardness and insecurity, which manifest themselves in lyrics as martyrdom, separation from society, loyalty to others labeled as “misfits,” as well as a temper that’s quick to be offended. Faux bravado and growling screams offer defense against these perceived slights. But unless you’re a conflicted child of divorce, the shrieking and paranoia seem dramatic and silly.

This genre fits Mother Mae I like a black fingerless glove. They faultlessly adhere to the standard composition, complete with valleys of slow soft picking on the guitar and sensitive whispered words of devotion, punctuated instantly with peaks of WILD FRENZIED SHOUTING and AN UNLEASHING OF ALL THE INSTRUMENTS!

One aspect of nu metal that anyone under 40 can appreciate is a hard-rock rhythm performed with firecracker drumming and lightning-riffed guitar work. Mother Mae I does it better than most; Courtois’s drumming is on par with or better than any national headlining band. Which is a shame because Mother Mae I is far too talented to restrict themselves to a decade-old style of play that was popular among record labels for its ability to separate angsty tweens from their parents’ cash.

Album: Remember Me Dead (2007)
Artist: Mother Mae I
Label: self-released
Where available/price: for $5 plus shipping
Songs: 1) Toys 2) Remember Me Dead 3) Invisibly 4) In the Age of Pestilence 5) Faded
Band: Travis Neal (vocals), Michael Russo (vocals, guitar), Justin Kase (guitar), Geoff Burroughs (bass), Paul Courtois (drums)

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Les Allen Feb. 12, 2009 @ 5:24 p.m.

I liked them better when they dressed as Priests and white face paint and worshiped the Devil.


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