This is a review of "Underneath The Sprawl" recorded by Nerve Engine. The review was written by Hannah Gurnett in 2005.
This is the second release from the multi regional band and once again self recorded in keeping with their independent attitude. ‘Underneath The Sprawl’ hits you from the first track with relentless crushing riffs and sky scraping melodies layered with rich harmonies adding a slightly dark element, this is an album of deeply atmospheric arena sized rock songs.
With self confessed influences ranging from Tool through Portishead to Black Sabbath there is plenty of variation in the songs from the string section on the six minute epic ‘Tighten My Grip’, acoustic guitar on classic power balled ‘Distance’ to the grunge rock of ‘Void’, this band clearly know their way around their instruments.
Although the music does sometimes takes away from the vocals which don’t always seem quite powerful enough to push each track to its full potential and songs this ambitious would benefit from slicker recording, this is a strong album from a band with a distinctive and powerful sound which should see them getting a lot more recognition in the near future.