The Miami-Dade area of Florida is alive with various Latin cultures, and the music rich with those influences. Though hard rock and heavy metal are not the genre from which one expects to see and hear the flag being waved. Yet that is just what AmeriLatin metal quartet Venejer is doing.
Unless one is listening for it, the band’s Latin influences do not jump out at you. They are in fact fairly subtle, but they are layered in the band’s drum work and overall feel of the music, adding a unique vibe to Venejer‘s tight break downs, and melodically accessible metal fusion.
Venejer formed in 2004 when vocalist Juan Amato connected with guitarist Jose Gonzalez. The band then rounded out with drummer Christian Espinales, guitarist Oniel Laffitte, and bassist Diego Rossin. Their Latin backgrounds cover, Cuba, Brazil, Nicaragua, Venezuela and the Dominican Republic. They guys blend it all together with some inspired and crushing fret and skins work all overlaid by Amato’s vocal prowess.
Of course as life so often does in this shit happens world, it reshaped the band, with guitarist Jose Gonzalez moving on to pursue non-musical interests, and a return to Brazil for Rossin. Laffitte has taken over sole guitar chores while bassist Danny Arrieta has joined the ranks.
Two years ago Venejer connected with local producer Paul Trust known for his work with Atom Smash. Together they recorded the band’s EP Trapped Inside. If Trust is involved you already know it’s well produced, but more important, the songs are as strong as many bands signed to major label contracts.
When I cranked up Trapped Inside I was instantly reminded of Disturbed and Sevendust. The guys have a knack for building harmony laden auditory wrecking balls. They plow right through your cerebrum creating a sonic sensory overload. It’s easy to hear why the band has had such regional success. Now the stage is set for a national explosion.
Take a listen for yourselves and see if you don’t find their sound addictive and inspired.