Music Reviews

Gemini Syndrome ‘Lux’ album review

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Set to unleash their sonic assault on September 10, Gemini Syndrome’s Lux album is poised to make converts of metal fans everywhere.  From striking melodies to sonic attacks that assault the senses, Lux is the album I have been waiting for all year.  It is, by far, the best album I have heard in a very long time.

My musical tastes run the gamut from thrash (Machine Head) to industrial metal (Fear Factory) to what I dub ‘scary metal’ (Rob Zombie, Marilyn Manson, Davey Suicide).  One genre I do not usually listen to is nu metal (Disturbed, Linkin Park).  Gemini Syndrome sit somewhere in between.  Neither nu metal, nor industrial, they do somewhat fit in both of those categories.  Like a vocalistic bastard off shoot of Tool or A Perfect Circle, Gemini Syndrome are carving out their own musical path.

In April I conducted an email interview with Aaron and Brian from Gemini Syndrome.  In the interview they stated:

BRIAN:  I don’t think there will ever be such a thing as Mainstream Metal. The idea of having “real” metal on a mainstream rock and roll station is contradictory. The good stuff is always underground and I like it that way. 

AARON: I love metal and have for years but Brian is totally right.  Metalheads don’t want their music to be mainstream or “popular” in that sense.  It becomes “sell out” and then hated.  I don’t think we are a metal band.  I think we all listen to metal and are influenced by it but there are so many other influences in us that it creates a different type of music.

photo-credit-jonathan-weiner-extralarge_1377195659147This creates a problem, as they are destined to be breakout stars on the mainstream radio stations.  And it is the “good stuff”, as Brian stated.

Honestly, it has been a very long time since I have dug a record as much as this one.  Musically, they are borderline metal/thrash.  Just listen to the track ‘Falling Apart’.  What sets this apart from a typical thrash song, though, are the vocals by Aaron Nordstrom.  With a unique voice that is slightly reminiscent of Maynard James Keenan from Tool and A Perfect Circle, Aaron brings the melodic vocals one would expect from radio play band.  Then Mike Salerno enters the mix and brings the crunch and growl that dirties up the proceedings in a very satisfying way.

The guitar work by Mike Salerno and Rich Juzwick is impressive.  Never attempting to play excessive solos or over the top riffs that don’t fit the song (I’m looking at you Kirk Hammett and Eddie van Halen), they provide what is needed to make the songs flow smoothly while doing it in an ear pleasing way.  Their work is intricate, but they are not attempting to show off.  They know how to play, they know how to play well, and they know it.  There is no need for them to show off.  Their riffs and chords are in service to the song, not to stand out as ‘wanna be’ Satriani students.

The drum work is the one thing that really, really stood out to me.  Brian Steele Medina seems to be playing in service to the song, but occasionally you will hear the little bits of metal that brought Five Finger Death Punch to my attention a few years back.  Double bass occasionally highlights the songs and this will bring the attention from metal fans everywhere.  We are trained from birth to listen for the hardcore sounds of double bass.  The drum work is highlighted by the masterful bass work of A. P., hailing from Milan, Italy.

There is not a weak track on this CD.  Typically, when I dig a CD, there is always a weak track that I skip over.  I have not skipped over a song yet, even though there are a couple stand out tracks on the disc that I feel are going to be huge hits for the band. If there’s any justice in the world, the track ‘Stardust’ will become a huge hit on rock radio. It is the best track on the record, and with a record this good, that is saying a lot.

Gemini Syndrome Lux releases on September 10, 2013.  If you are a fan of rock n roll, hard rock, metal, or nu metal, you owe it to yourself to pick this album up.  Click through the cover art above to be taken to Amazon where you can pre-order it.  Do yourself a favor and pick it up.

Make no mistake.  Gemini Syndrome are not your typical hard rock/metal band.  Check out the video for their most recent single, Basement, here:

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BIZZAM!! Fun Facts

  • Aaron Nordstrom, vocalist for Gemini Syndrome, was a touring guitarist for Otep in 2007-2008.
  • Aaron Nordstrom was born with albinism (he has no pigment).
  • Gemini Syndrome band members hail from Chicago, Cincinnati, Denver, Chattanooga, and Milan, Italy.  

Read my interview with Gemini Syndrome here.

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5 thoughts on “Gemini Syndrome ‘Lux’ album review

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