REVIEW: Nazca Lines – Hyperventilation

Artist: Nazca Lines
Album: Hyperventilation
Genre: Punk
Label: Stressed Sumo Records

If you’re planning on listening to the new Nazca Lines album, Hyperventilation, then good luck to you. It takes seven songs for the band to hit their stride, and even then they hit some bumps in the road. At their worst, Nazca Lines is disorienting and unbearable. At their best, the band is average and tolerable. This album takes a god amount of stamina to get through, and you may find yourself wondering if the high points in it are worth plowing through the whole thing.

First off is “This Little Island,” a song that nearly scared me away from listening to the rest of the album. It is disjointed and random, and I found myself wide-eyed, terrified, and wondering what I had gotten myself into. However, the band does freely admit, “We don’t have time for your struggle.” It didn’t exactly make me feel better, but at least they were honest. Finally, mercifully, the song ended. I was left utterly confused and a little but scared of what the next song would be like.

“Bones in Boxes” is what I consider the band’s attempt to coax me back in. It has a nice little beat, and the lyrics are rather introspective. They pose the question, “Are we just bones in boxes?” It’s a fairly common question, but Nazca Lines presents it in such a way that made me wonder whether the members were truly happy and satisfied with their lives, or perhaps searching for something more. But once again, they need to know when to end a song.

I would pay attention to “This Crippled Devil,” because the themes in it pop up again and again in multiple songs. It’s a defiant, mocking song, but feels more like the speech of a rebel set to crashing, angry music. I have a feeling this entire song is meant as a metaphor for something, but I haven’t a clue what. Warning: this is also a running theme throughout the record.

The song “Swedish Kiss” just baffles me. The music is unique from the other songs, but the lyrics sound like a continuation of the previous one. It’s another angry sounding song, but I’m fairly certain it’s the band’s attempt as a love song. The line “But now I must go/ This never happened” strikes me as what a person might say when trying to distance themselves from a lover. Maybe I’m just grasping at straws here, but then again, the title of the song does have the word “kiss” in it. Calling it a love song at least gives it some direction.

I don’t think it was the intention of Nazca Lines to make me laugh with “From the Bottom of a Crevasse,” but unfortunately that’s what happened. Why was I laughing? Because at this point in my listening experience, I related perfectly to the lyrics in this song: “Baby this charade is getting old…No rescue in sight, that’s the plan.” Though I was desperately hoping the next half of the record would be short, I could at least appreciate the fact that there was some actual singing in this song, rather than just highly animated talking.

“Spike Them All” is partially the band mocking someone, and partially them just being lazy. The line “Everyone will know you’re brave/Everyone will know your name” fulfills the mocking aspect of it, since it comes after the band describes how a person’s friend comes and slits their throat and burns their house. How nice. Now, either this person they are speaking of really is a brave soul for enduring this ordeal, or they are greedy for attention. My guess is the latter, but, as with all of these songs, it’s really up in the air. Nazca Lines then brings up the theme of the rise and decline of empires…just like they did in “This Crippled Devil.” But wait, I thought that song ended!

By far the best song on this album is “The Ghost.” This is what Nazca Lines should strive for. This song makes sense, both lyrically and musically. In fact, the music is so good in this song that I almost felt cheated: why is the band covering up their skill with overthought, dragged out songs? The same with “Golden Sunsets.” I only wish this song had come earlier, because it’s not bad. It’s kind of sweet and wistful…in an aggressive way. Hyperventilation was overloaded in the beginning with pounding, low quality songs, and the good ones get lost in the onslaught. Again, if you have enough stamina to make it to this point, you won’t be sorry.

Instead of riding the high, Nazca Lines follows their streak of two good songs with the most headache-inducing, ridiculous song I could imagine. The lyrics are cheesy, the attempt at being clever falls flat, and the song is, once again, too long. I shut it off halfway through so I could recompose myself and try to finish it. I should have just left it off.

To wrap things up, Nazca Lines decided to be cruel and ironic, and not in a good way. “New Volume” is basically a middle finger to anyone who just sat through this entire album (that would be me). They say, “I won’t listen though you say I should.” Really, guys? After I just listened to this whole thing? At this point, I didn’t really care what the lyrics were, or that there was a lovely little piano section in the song. I was just glad it was over.

Score: 3/10
Review written by: Michelle Principi

James Shotwell
Latest posts by James Shotwell (see all)
Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed.