Review: Mano Humana – Sombras

Posted: January 14, 2016 in Reviews
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Sombras cover art

Chilean metallers Mano Humana formed in 2012, and aim to write music free of traditional genre tropes, which still fits with a violent and aggressive style. Hopefully this translates into something riff heavy and awesome!

South American metal tends to be on the side of rabid brutality and extremely raw. So it’s a pleasant experience to find an album that, while aggressive in execution, is quite well produced and clear. The modern thrashings of ‘Jueces’ has elements of early Meshuggah, with some almost djent signatures in places. It has a killer groove though, which continues through bangers like ‘Desintrospeccion’ and the chugging heaviness of ‘Demencia’

What I like about Mano Humana is they don’t just play solid if uninspired thrash, nor do they do a bad copy of Meshuggah riffs. What they bring is an honest amalgamation of both, with plenty of quirky guitar work, and some jagged time changes. It isn’t all relentless riffing though, with the introspective noodlings of ‘Grito En Silencio’ displaying an almost progressive edge, or the calming start of longest track ‘Arbol’. I really like the spacey riff that opens ‘Ataca y Ataca’, and the call and response sections is very Soulfly-esque. In fact, this song feels like their Brazilian counterparts, with a dense tribal drum and primal roar echoing Cavalera’s tribe.

I like Mano Humana. ‘Sombras’ feels like a breath of fresh air, with its amalgamation of thrash and a heavier sound. It is a little weird, but once it gets going, you’ll be hooked!


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