Red Horizon - Across the World
Record Label: Gotham Records
Release Date: January 2007
When the word “red” appears in a band’s name like Red Alert, Red Cloud, or Red Chord, you are almost certain that the music will sound passionate, and Red Horizon fit that stereotype as assuredly as tulips and windmills are stereotypical of Holland. The rock quintet Red Horizon show properties of pop punk and modern rock on their latest full-length release Across the World. Produced by the members of Red Horizon and Aaron Hellam, the album roars with passion and broils with nu-metal powered tunage that produces wild foliage and phat masses. Lead singer Omar Nieto’s vocals peer through the taut coils like a guiding light leading the path. Through the thrashing drumbeats of Namor Nalupta, the heave-hoes of bass pulls by Ulises Rodriguez, and the barbed tangles of guitarists Carlos Ibarra and Villardo Marilao, Nieto’s voice keeps a melodic chime that is perched above the swordplay below.
Similarly to Sugarcult, Nieto’s vocals ride along the rhythmic grooves without being over-flooded by them. And like Brand New, Red Horizon’s nu-metal havens are cot by grilling guitar sears and high powered thrusts. It’s a lot of loud noise that is melodically hewn. The lavish pop punk murals of “One Reason” and the title track challenge the band to tame their rock vibrations without losing their mettle, which they accomplish quite skillfully. The lyrics in the title track generate an exceptional moment on the album when the words are not about one person’s individual story, but they kind of create a group hug ambience: “Can you hear the voices far and proud, across the world they sing / It is best to hear them from your mouth, across the world.”
The band turns up the dial with nu-metal plumes intensifying “That Way” and Unbroken.” The movements thrash and tighten like an iron vise around the guitar chords. Nieto’s voice holds the baton steady sustaining a melodic pitch right through the rings of fire. The band also plunges into modern rock throttles relatable to Finger Eleven on tracks like “So Much More,” “Another Universe,” and “Fade,” as guitars seize and retract in intervals. Nieto’s vocals move along with the rhythms, breathing in and exhaling out with the cycles of recessions and expansion in the grooves. I have to make note of the excellent guitar solo on “Another Universe” that rises with all the glory of a guitar god. Red Horizon also indulge in some acoustic rock masts that hold up the sails of “So By the Way” and the reprisal of “Across the World,” which features the band’s twin guitars playing counter melodies and weaving their lines into startling tweed patterns. The band’s acoustic material keeps to a high standard that fits Nieto’s vocals as well as the nu-metal blazes.
Red Horizon accrued an extensive history as a working band starting out as childhood friends and taking their favorite pastime as kids into a profession in their twenties. Building a following in their native San Francisco/Bay Area, Red Horizon tout their recent signing with Gotham Records as a major score. The band’s latest release Around the World gets high marks for creating challenging obstacles that Nieto’s vocals have no problem managing.