Meka Nism – Shaking the Earth
Review By Michael Aronovitz
The female fronted band Meka Nism are a powerhouse defined by exceptional vocals and instrumental precision. The singer, Meka, is an absolute star with a spine severing growl and a strong melodic vocal that easily surfaces as the capstone of this band. Considering the past and present singers that set the stage for this like Ann Wilson, Amy Lee, and Lzzy Hale, it is clear that Meka has stepped up to fly this particular banner. Girlfriend can sing, people. And from watching the video the band has recently released, featuring the title track from their five song EP “The War Inside,” she simply seems to own the performance space, born to be there, willing to travel at glorious speeds letting you ride shotgun with a smile plastered across your face.
Originally from Orlando, the band members are: Meka on vocals, Bobby Keller on lead guitar, Danny Arrieta on rhythm guitar, Joey Bivo on bass, Russell Ray on drums, and Jay Adkinsson on keys. The players are good. Not only does Bobby Keller unleash blistering (and quite tasteful) platform solos, but generally, the rhythm section cuts and grooves with an almost military precision, laying out the perfect canvas for Meka’s various brushstrokes, color schemes, mood-portraits, and metaphorical masks. The effect is strangely heavy and hard and at the same time brilliant and theatrical. When watching Meka Nism I almost automatically go to the old fantasy of bringing a musical or poetic prodigy from past centuries to observe, just to see what the reaction might be. What would Shakespeare think of the beginning of the video “The War Inside” when Meka is holding a skull, similar to Hamlet’s handling that of his old court jester, Yorick, contemplating the idea that death changes our imaginations of things. What would Mozart have thought of a woman who could have sung the intricate solos he wrote for the character of the Queen in “The Magic Flute” and also unleashed spine-ripping growls that would have sent those who believed in witchcraft running and screaming.
I would like to see the band live. I also look forward to their progression, for it seems to me that they are only at the beginning of their yellow brick road. I am curious. Do the instrumentalists stay as they are, sort of looking alike with tats and hairstyles, playing flawlessly, creating this amazing tapestry of backdrop and scrims in order to make things perfect for the jewel with the microphone? Or do they grow and evolve in a different way, becoming something of which we’ve never seen?
Either way, I’m in.
Either way, I’m buying the EP.
Michael Aronovitz is a horror novelist and college professor of English. He just finished his 4th novel titled “The Sculptor.”
MHF Magazine/Michael Aronovitz