NONPOINT: "A Strong Statement"

by Thrash-head

I am of the privileged, because I have digital cable. Because of that, I have a special channel that is devoted entirely to new and old metal of all kinds. Because I have this channel, I heard a song called "What a Day". Because I heard that song, I have the Nonpoint CD entitled "Statement".

Although a nu-metal band by association, where this band's peers often leave off, this disc picks up. The CD is full of enough twists and turns to keep you interested, but delivered with enough heaviness to keep you content. There are moments when the instrumentalists even break out for a solo fill, all the while lead singer Elias proving that he has some of the decidedly stronger pipes in this subgenre. This all makes for an enjoyable disc of metal riffs and heavy grooves that blows away much of the other releases currently coming out in the more mainstream metal market. Not enough people know about this band,

Wormwood Chronicles: First some background info. Where you guys from? How'd you meet, and where'd you get your start?

Elias: We're all based out of Ft. Lauderdale. We met, and it was kind of two bands coming together. Rob and I were in Nonpoint for a little while; for almost 3 or 4 months before we met Andy and Ken, who were in another band called Fuse. We were having creative differences with our guitar player and bass player, so we asked Andy and Ken if they wanted to jam with us, and first day we were together we wrote two songs, which was pretty cool. Ever since then, we¹ve just been writing music, building up our fanbase, working on our mailing list, getting that together, and just pretty much playing shows down here in south Florida.

WC: How did you get hooked up with MCA?

E: We were at Zadafest, and Jason's [Bieler, manager/producer] band was also playing as well, Super Transatlantic. He heard us and said that he knew somebody at MCA who was looking to sign heavy bands right now, and introduced us to MCA and our A&R guy there named Hans. Hans gave us a little demo deal, we went into the studio, recorded a couple tracks, came back out, shopped around with that a little bit. We got a bunch of labels interested and when MCA came back to us with their first deal, it was a very fair deal, so we decided to go with it.

WC: Your CD sounds really tight and precise, yet at the same time is very easygoing and entertaining. Was that the goal, to be musically tight, yet overall laidback?

E: We wanted to keep it as dynamic as possible; it's gonna give us the opportunity to be able to grow. Ya know, we just try to keep the dynamics in the music.

WC: I am not too fond of rap music, but I gotta say that I believe "Tribute" is definitely one of the best and heaviest tunes of the CD. How did you guys come to the decision to remake those songs like that? (The track is a medley of "The Children's Song " , "Woo Hah, Got You All In Check " and "Method Man" - Abna Da Kronik.)

E: That song's actually about three years old. When I first joined the band, I really wasn't into the rock/metal scene, and my influences were mostly rap and hip-hop. It was just a fun song that we put together. I had those three verses that I thought of just putting together, and the guys threw music over it, and it kinda just made itself I guess (laughing).

WC: Is "What A Day" based on a true story?

E: NoŠwell sorta. Yeah it is. It's not based on MY true story. A friend of mine told me a horrible story about how he got wasted one night and actually had to ask somebody for a ride home. He said he reminded him of his stepfather and so he trusted him, and he ended up passing out in the car and he got him to sit on a park bench and he couldn't wake up to tell him wherehe lived. (laughter throughout) So it coulda been a lot worse and I just sorta elaborated on the story a little.

WC: I noticed the song "Orgullo", and how it's sung completely in Spanish. How big of a part does your heritage play in the band?

E: Not so much now. It did with the original members because all of us were Spanish, but now with the addition of Andy and Ken we kind of... ya know, it¹s a song that everybody loves from any denomination; it really doesn't matter. They just kinda go off to it. It was something that we said to put on the album. There's still Latin beats and stuff like that, and obviously there's gonna be some percussion stuff that's gonna sound Latin because my drummer's Latin. As far as the overall music, I think it's just that each one of us gives our 25% and it just makes what it makes. We¹re not aiming for any particular, ya know, "latino rock".

WC: It just happens.

E: Yeah, it just happens sometimes (laughter).

WC: Are the majority of your lyrics based off personal experience?

E: Yeah, I'd pretty much have to say that all of 'em except "What a Day", and uh...

WC: "Tribute"?

E: Yeah, that and "What a Day" are the only two songs (that are not based off personal experience). All the other ones are either ex-girlfriend songs, ex-friend songs, or music about being out on the road and stuff like that.

WC: You're about to go on tour with Mudvayne, how did that come about?

E: We had the opportunity to play a couple shows with those guys a couple months ago and we became very good friends with them, and they just invited us to come out again.

WC: Any tour plans for after this?

E: Spineshank, and then after that we really don't know (laughing).

WC: What is the significance of the name Nonpoint?

E: Actually, Nonpoint the name is derived from... well, ya see. Andy and I were in a shop class once, and we used to have this teacher named Mr. McGrady, and you know the shop teacher with the missing fingers?

WC: Um-hmm...

E: Well, we had one of them! (laughing).

WC: What is the high point of your career thus far?

E: Probably sharing a stage with Deftones and Stone Temple Pilots at Zadafest... well, actually there's two points I guess. That, standing in front of 35,000 people, jumpin' around and screamin' was a wonderful thing. And walkin' into a store and seein' your CDs. I guess that was the highpoint. Having my own little... you know, the all the dividers and all the CDs

WC: Yeah, bein' able to say "Hey this is my divider!"

E: Exactly, and it says "Nonpoint" on it!"

WC: They're all sold out but they do carry it! (laughter)

E: I know, that's exactly what I'm sayin'! I love goin' in there and seei

WC: Most bands have had what we call a Spinal Tap moment at least once. What would you consider was your Spinal Tap moment?

E: We got lost at the... I forgot what theater it was. I think it was the Norva theater in Memphis. In the theater, in the back, I couldn't find the dressing rooms so I walked around for about ten or fifteen minutes and then just got so frustrated I just went in the van. The guys were up there somewhere I just couldn¹t find them. So I guess that¹s my "Spinal Tap" moment. (laughter)

WC: What are the band's current plans?

E: Touring, touring, touring, and more touring. As much touring as possible. We need to advertise and get out for the fans so that they can see us.

Thrash-head is a fine upstanding lad for whom METAL IS LIFE! To contact the writer of this article, send your email to: