Nebulae – Pulse (Time to Kill Records)

Wednesday, 16th October 2019
Rating: 8/10

Evident in the heavy music landscape today are artists who fuse diverse influences into this atomic explosion of sonic groove, pushing limits of intensity and somehow corralling the proceedings into a cohesive songwriting format. Italian act Nebulae are another unit to throw the aural array of nu-metal, metalcore, progressive groove, and alternative ambiance into something quite alluring and intriguing on their second full-length Pulse. These nine tracks clocking in at an economical thirty-two minutes and change pack a wallop most will not soon forget and require a few playbacks to process all the information and smaller details contained within.

Unafraid to be clean and pretty one segment and then throw the veritable heavy groove kitchen sink at you the next – the main hooks are fairly accessible, just built out into these progressive branches that can be challenging on a rhythm or vocal perspective. Aspects of Gojira, Jinjer, and the Deftones probably come into focus the most when taking in “Removal” or the crushing steamroller “Bite”, while the quieter, introspective sections that open “Smother” for instance prove Nebulae are equally as adept at carrying weight on the softer sides of the spectrum when need be for that brain breathing before entering assault mode again. Vocalist Miriam Granatello has that standout quality with her clean singing and fierce, maniacal screams – you can feel her throat bleeding venom throughout the record, right out of the gate on “Trapped” on through the Gojira-like charge that closes the album for “Dust”. Lyrically setting out a table of contents that aim to improve and evolve experiences for human beings to evolve and fight, you feel like by the conclusion of the record that nothing can stand in your way.

Nebulae take the multi-genre approach and synthesize the best elements to create shorter songs packed with power, hooks, and incredible grooves even as there are shapeshifting time signature changes and wild clean to scream vocal maneuvers. Pulse could be that hidden gem for those who are looking for more of the Gojira/Jinjer blend with a bit of Tesseract/Deftones differentiation.

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