Adelaide thrashers Alium are relatively new to the Australian metal scene, having yet to play …
Nonpoint has a catalogue stretching back to the late 1990s, but founder and vocalist Elias Soriano is of the opinion that his band is just hitting its stride with last year’s X.
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“It’s definitely at the top of the list for me. I’m very, very proud of this record,” Soriano says from home, a few days out from Nonpoint’s Australian tour. “I feel like it’s given us some of the most aggressive songs that we’ve ever put out and probably some of the most heartfelt songs that we’ve ever put out. Feeding both sides of that extremity is something that this project has always been happy to do and proud to do.”
For him, X, the band’s tenth official album, is the definition of where Nonpoint now stands, with some tracks going places the band has never really attempted before.
“All of these songs were meant to be because they’re defining the band,” he says confidently. “Songs like Milestone are quintessential Nonpoint, songs like Crashing and Paralyzed are songs that we’ve always wanted to do but we’ve never really felt that they fit against other songs that we really wanted on a record, but this time we did it. Unapologetically, we just picked whatever songs we felt were the best, and those are the ones that made it.”
After 25 years, Soriano believes Nonpoint is at a stage where they can afford to take chances creatively. “To have some fun with it,” as he puts it, and go a little beyond what they have become known for. Before work began on X, the band had almost a year off—plenty of time to re-evaluate where they wanted to be.
“We have ten albums now and we’ve done everything we’ve wanted to do, and now, I want to try some things that no one would expect us to do. Get back to challenging ourselves and writing more than what we know is cool and people will recognise as a Nonpoint song. We want people to go, not so much ‘Hey, have you heard the new Nonpoint?’ but more – ‘Have you heard the new Nonpoint?’ That’s the definite directive of all our music, moving forward.”
Unapologetically, we just picked whatever songs we felt were the best, and those are the ones that made it.
[ Elias Soriano ]
Soriano is quick to concede that part of the challenge would be to keep hold of the fans they’ve made. Bigger bands can and often do make wholesale changes to their sound and style and still manage to hold on to fans no matter what direction they go off in. For artists at less than global superstar status, that’s sometimes a risky chance to take.
“It’s harder!” the singer declares. “Because it’s what people expect of our band and gained us the success that we’ve gotten, so for us to step anywhere outside of that is a challenge for everyone around us to accept.”
Evolving as a band in the days when nu- and rap-metal were heading for a peak, Nonpoint had little profile in Australia until they appeared at Soundwave Festival in 2011 on the back of the previous year’s Miracle, a breakthrough for the group when it entered the Billboard Top 30.
“Unfortunately we don’t get to go there as often as we would like. Our schedule has been packed, we’ve done another record since (the last time) and that took a good seven, eight months out of our lives. We’ve been excited to get back.
After a second bite of the Soundwave cherry in 2015, this tour will be Nonpoint’s third visit to Australian shores and their first outside of a major touring package. This time, they are here at the invitation of G-punkers (hed) PE.
“We’re old friends,” Soriano says. “We’ve known the boys for years. They invited us and they definitely have a high energy show, and our show’s pretty high energy so us touring over there with them is going to be wonderful.”
Immediately before their Australian shows they were out in the US on the second leg of P.O.D’s Full Circle tour and as soon as they get back they will be hitting the road with Hellyeah, whose singer Chad Gray co-produced and guested on 2010’s Miracle. The current resurgence of popularity for nu-metal is certainly keeping things busy for Nonpoint.
“Yeah, we’re definitely getting a little bit of that resurgence ourselves,” the singer says. We’re keeping up with bands of that era as well. Shows are selling out, so we’re definitely down for the lovefest!”
Catch Nonpoint with (hed) p.e at the following dates:
PERTH // Wednesday 26 June 2019 // Rosemount
ADELAIDE // Thursday 27 June 2019 // Enigma
MELBOURNE // Friday 28 June 2019 // Max Watts
SYDNEY // Saturday 29 June 2019 // Manning Bar
BRISBANE // Sunday 30 June 2019 // The Zoo