The late 90’s and early 2000’s was a time of pushing the limits of heavy metal music. From when I first came across metal albums in the 80’s, the genre had evolved so much that the bands classed as metal back then became totally unrecognisable to the new breed of bands doing the rounds.
Bands like Tool, Dream Theater, NIN, Ministry, Faith No More, Limp Bizkit, Fear Factory, Korn, Creed, Disturbed, Slipknot, Mudvayne, Machine Head and Pantera pushed the genre forward during this period. Each act bringing into their sound something that wasn’t there before. Suddenly Metallica sounded like a pop band compared to these bands.
And then I came across Ill Nino. A fusion of Latin Flamenco rhythms and percussion with metal riffs and singing which moved between aggressive screaming and melodic singing.
On September 18, 2001, Ill Niño released their debut album, “Revolution Revolución”.
The album was a commercial success for Roadrunner Records, moving over 350,000 albums worldwide in the first two years after release.
The Personnel for the album is Cristian Machado on Vocals and Samples, Jardel Martins Paisante and Marc Rizzo on Guitar, Lazaro Pina on Bass, Dave Chavarri on Drums and Samples and Roger Vasquez on Percussion.
And seeing a person called DJ Skratch on Turntables as an additional musician will either scare people off or make them curious.
God Save Us
It’s like Groove Nu-Metal. Vocally its aggressive in the verses, with a melodic Chorus.
Check out the flamenco like interlude at 2.30.
If You Still Hate Me
It’s like Industrial Nu-Metal at the start.
But at the 2 minute mark a flamenco metal section appears and then a head banging circle pit riff afterwards. The movement between styles is why this album got my attention.
Distorted guitars and Latin percussion working to create something unique.
Screaming verses and a melodic Chorus. The duality of modern American metal at the start of the new century.
And chuck in a Bridge delivered in Spanish.
What Comes Around
The most catchiest song on the album. A Nu-Metal riff kicks it off, and then an atmospheric Korn like guitar riff in the verses, while the melodic singing carries the vocal melody.
The flamenco and percussion in the intro gives way to a Disturbed meets Limp Bizkit riff.
The Latin percussion and distorted guitars is a delightful mash up. Vocally, the screaming loses me and the melodic singing re-captures my interest.
I like the Intro riff on this. Its head banging groove metal.
I Am Loco
Who isn’t loco these days?
Press play to hear one guitar play a riff on the higher registers while another plays chords.
Rip Out Your Eyes
So much violence.
The intro riff is head banging heavy.
It’s a flamenco acoustic rock cut. Santana is not the only musician that plays this style, but he is one of the biggest crossover artists, and because of that, this song reminds me of Santana.
The next album “Confession” is a lot more melodic and my favourite but if you want to start with something, then start with this.