Nadja – Numbness

Today I will review the second album of the year 2009 by my favorite Candian metal duo Nadja.
Whereas “The Sun Always shines on TV” was a collection of cover songs, “Numbness” is a collection of rarities and previously limited released tracks. But don’t let that turn you off.  Leah & Aiden add another beautiful release to their ever growing discography.

The album kicks off with Veil of Disillusion . It was originally featured on a compilation album by Crucial bliss recordings titled “Shadows Infinitum”. The melody reminds me of the first part of 2007’s “basefluid”, one of Nadja‘s strongest 12″.  It’s a haunting yet melodic slow creeper, perfect as an album opener.  The reverb drenched bass is as always crushing.
The second cut is my least favorite on the release. God rest Ye Merry Gentlemen is indeed a cover of the old Christmas carol performed in the past by artists such as Bing Crosby. Its quite daunting and sounds rather…evil. I assume many will enjoy this with a smile on their face. The excellent drum programing is what stood out the most for me.
Track 3 is a cover from Kids in the Hall titled Long Dark Twenties. This is the extended 7″ version which Nadja had previously released under the same title. It differs from that on “The Sun Always shines on TV” full length. It’s a lot slower and sounds rawer. I personally prefer the latter version. It’s the first time we hear Bakers vocals on this release and that’s always good because the vocals just add so much more feeling.

Alien in My own skin
is the highlight of this album and probably one of the best Nadja tracks ever made. The melody, vocals and lyrics are heartbreaking. The reverb drenched bass is up to max and just swallows everything else. We just hear the faint vocals and manipulated guitars in the background. This was only featured on the Nadja Myspace page for a while and this track alone is worth the purchase of this release.
There is also an interesting remix available by dubstep/breakstep legends
Vex’d.
The very appriopriatly titled Time is our Disease is up next.
Again a melancholic / sadd melody with barely audible vocals just breaking through the distortion and reverb mayhem opens the track. It picks up tempo in the second part working its way up to a memorable climax at the very end. Interesting songwriting.
Closer Numb was also found on the previously mentioned “Base Fluid” 12″. It is also one of my favorite Nadja tracks and to find it as a bonus here was a pleasant surprise.

I reckon the final 3 tracks alone are well worth the purchase of this album. Even if you are not familiar with Nadja, this is a great place to start as it is a fairly easy digestable Nadja release (compared to for example the epic monsters “Truth Becomes Death” or ‘”Thaumogenesis”). Adorers of shoegaze or ambient may also check this out.  The prolific Nadja prove again in 2009 that they are reliable as ever when it comes to quality music. We even have a second collaboration with Black Boned Angel to look forward to in the summer. Look to this website for the review of course.

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