The disc starts off in a decent way but Love Equals Death really makes a play for the big time whern the second track on the disc (When We Fall). The driven sound of this track, coupled with the multiple harmonies that find their way to the fore at specific points during the track, should be more than enough to keep listeners focused in for a few minutes.
Other tracks, such as “Lottery” use a much more sedate approach to the track. In a sense, Love Equals Death is going through a route that has been traversed by bands like the New Romantics from the eighties. Where there are slower songs on “Nightmerica”, these are punctuated and bookended by the controlled fury of songs like “Sonora”. The goth-punk style seems to be the easiest pigeonhole for Love Equals Death to fit in, but the fact is that the band does not sound like AFI or I Am Ghost in the least. Rather, they come out with a specific brand of punk rock that shakes itself free from any genre distinctions. The closest that Love Equals Death gets to goth-punk occurs during songs like “Black Brain”, which use a twinge of Davey Havoc to complete the track. The churning bass lines present during this track keeps individuals interested, as the band cranks out hit after hit. The differing styles of tracks on “Nightmarica” are separate enough that individuals will almost feel as if this is a mix CD.
Put this on during a party and people will be interested throughout the disc’s half-hour of music. What seems to be the only black mark that one can levy against Love Equals Death is the tremendous use of Bush quotes during “The Broadcast”. When individuals in 2015 listen to this, are they even going to remember why the quotes were included in the first place? Without anything in the way of tracks that are lacking, Love Equals Death come forth with a disc that simultaneously takes on the mid-nineties idea of pop-punk, goth-punk, and rock at the same time. Grabbing bits and pieces from each of the three styles, the final sound of “Nightmerica” is diverse, full-bodied and always fun. Here’s to hoping that Love Equals Death have a long career that allows them to further expand the range of their styles to a point where even odd styles are taken fully into stride.
Top Tracks: Caught In A Trap, Sonora
Love Equals Death – Nightmarica
Love Equals Death – Nightmarica / 2006 Fat Wreck / 11 Tracks / http://www.loveequalsdeath.com / http://www.fatwreck.com / Reviewed 30 March 2006