Drowning Pool – Strike a Nerve (Album Review)

Drowning Pool – Strike a Nerve (Album Review)

Drowning Pool is a band which has seen their fair share of changes over the twenty-five plus years. Rising to success in 2001 with their album Sinner, tragically a year later Lead Vocalist Dave Williams died. From there had a bit of a revolving door of frontman – from Jason Jones for 2004’s Desensitized, to Soil’s Ryan McCombs for 2007’s Full Circle to 2010’s self-titled album. Then Jasen Moreno joined up as their lead voice in 2012… and he has been there since. Giving the band stability, Moreno has been a part of the fold for a decade and recorded three albums with them from 2013’s Resilience and 2016’s Hellelujah to their most recent, 2022’s Strike a Nerve

Six long years between albums, there is no question that dedicated fans have patiently waited for new music. That in mind, Strike a Nerve finally hit on September 30th T-Boy and UMe, but was the wait worth it? To address this concern, yes, it is because Drowning Pool – Moreno, C. J. Pierce (guitar), Mike Luce (drums), Stevie Benton (bass) – show their unique sound has evolved yet again. Eleven songs in total, Strike a Nerve does exactly what its title says; it is tougher and rougher than Drowning Pool has ever been. That in mind, times are also rough and tough, so it makes sense that lyrically these songs are straightforward and brutally honest. 

As mentioned, they do not mince words, and the album’s intro, “Doing Time in Hell,” gives you a pretty good insight of what is to come. This leads into the rugged “Hate Against Hate” which is a strong song featuring shouted vocals on the chorus, as well as the verse, but also clean vocals in the bridge. Then “Stay and Bleed” comes in punchy double kicks on drums and intense singing from Moreno that will cause your adrenaline levels to rise. 

Changing it up, the title-track is much smoother in comparison to the prior tracks. This is also the case with “Racing to a Red Light” which begins smoothly and calm before a great build-up. After this the single “Choke” is rhythmic, yet catchy, while on the other hand, “Everything but You” is tragic and sad, before the heavy, rocking “Down in the Dirt,” but also the equally murky “Rope.” And from this point Drowning Pool do not let their foot off the gas with the ominous, rowdy, yet multi-faceted “A Devil More Damned” before shredding guitars and blast-beat driven single “Mind Right” closes the album strong. 

As stated, it has been some time since Drowning Pool has put out new music, and a lot has happened in that time. Strike a Nerve is a solid return for the band because it finds them working through all that has happened in the world, and there is no mercy. Clearly not sitting by in silence, Cryptic Rock gives this heavy rocking return 4 out of 5 stars. 

Drowning Pool – Strike A Nerve Album Artwork / T-Boy and UMe



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Nina Mende
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