This album is maybe not as immediate as 'Redeemer' the bands third (and in my opinion their best effort prior to 'Meridional')release, but give it a couple of spins and before long you may (like myself) find yourself pretty much listening to 'Meridional' on repeat. I've only owned this a few weeks but I'd already rate this a classic, probably their best yet, and definitely one of this years best releases.
Its probably not Norma Jean's heaviest release (as some claim) but the dark, melodic atmosphere on quieter moments really augments the sheer cathartic power of its joyous heaviest peaks. Not heavy just for the sake of it, but incredibly well crafted making both the light & heavy sides more poignant. Somehow the band craft great melody buried beneath layers of noisy (and often technical guitars) to superb effect, like no one else can.
Highlights for me so far are 'A media friendly turn for the worse' 'Deathbed atheist' 'The people that surround you on a regular basis' 'Falling from the sky:day seven'(showing a softer but no less intense side to NJ) and 'Everlasting tapeworm' (also the prize for best song title!) There are no low points and the album contains a few nice intrumental segments that allow the record room to breathe.
Well done Norma Jean, building on and feeding off their past works and creatively striving for more with this inspired (and addictive!) release.