New Mexican Erection – Co-Dependent

New Mexican Erection

Some people just weren’t meant to play music together, and New Mexican Erection is a fine example of why. Individually, the four members of the band seem to be adequate musicians, but together something gets lost in translation. The band is trying very hard – and I give props to anyone out there who is doing at least that for something they love – but I get the sense that each of these guys is pulling in opposite directions. The result is an album that is not only inconsistent, but fairly pedestrian as far as metal goes. It’s no surprise then that New Mexican Erection is calling it quits in a few short weeks, as it appears they have collectively realized that this band has gone as far as it can (and perhaps farther than it should have) and will be pursuing other musical ventures on their own.

New Mexican Erection hails from Las Cruces, New Mexico – a place not really known for producing great metal bands. This outfit is attempting to combine standard metal with more funk-oriented elements, but the combination of the two ends up sounding confused. Maybe the group needed better production help from someone who could pull the reigns in and give this foursome more focus, but regardless of what ifs and should haves, Co-Dependent barely keeps its head above water.

The same bewilderment is true of the vocals – it’s as if the singer isn’t sure whether a growling hardcore, semi-rap/spoken word, or an attempt at an actual singing style is more appropriate. Despite the attempts at sounding aggressive, you can understand every lyric on the album, and therein you will find another problem. New Mexican Erection writes about everyday things, which is fine to an extent, but most music fans don’t want to listen to music that focuses on such day-to-day drudgery as having to wake up early for work, pay your bills, or even getting stuck behind the slowest driver in the world. It’s just too whiny for metal. Consider the lines from “Open the Box”: “Not enough time in the day, when do I get to play? Not to mention all the bills that we have to pay.”

The most redeeming thing about Co-Dependent is the last, untitled track, which clocks in at just under 17 minutes. Here the band takes an actual experimental approach and focuses on creating a bit of atmosphere with shimmering guitar and other minimal sounds infused for more than half of the track. When they inject vocals and other instruments at about the 13-minute mark, the song turns into something less than stellar. The refrain, “blah blah blah,” just about sums it up.

I’m sure there are a fair amount of people out there who enjoy what New Mexican Erection is doing because you don’t stay together for six years and release two albums and an EP without some sort of fan base. However, at this point breaking up seems like the best route to take for these four guys. I have a feeling each member of this group will fare much better with more likeminded musicians, and I wish them all the best in their future endeavors.