“Wrongdoers” is already Norma Jean’s sixth album in eleven years and even though they have welcomed three new members to the fold since the release of 2010’s “Meridional”, these guys are still kicking ass for the lord in a convincing way. They start the album off with “Hive Minds”, a relatively melodic tune that serves as a nice way to lure you in before blowing you off your feet with “If You Got It At Five, You Got It At Fifty”, a two-minute long exhibition of contained chaos.
For the last few albums, Norma Jean has been expanding its sound and on “Wrongdoers” it’s the first time that it all seems to click together. The band’s mathcore tendencies with brutal dissonant riffage flow seamlessly into more atmospheric groove-driven post-hardcore parts. Meanwhile vocalist Corey Brandan goes from shredding his larynx to clean vocals in the time it takes for us to blink. Personally I would’ve liked to hear more barnburners like “The Lash Whistled Like A Stinging Wind” instead of the near nu metal stylings of “”Sword In Mouth, Fire Eyes” but hey, to each his own. It doesn’t take away from the fact that 90% of “Wrongdoers” is pretty damn effective.