Review Summary: NoGod's third album isn't the band's brightest moment, but isn't their weakest point by any means either.
In visual kei, a true metal band scarcely ever emerges. The reason behind this is, truthfully, fan girls prefer a poppier, more flamboyant kind of act (see bands like An Cafe & SuG), and true visual kei metal entered a deep coma in the early 90's. However, when bands (Dir en Grey specifically) emerged and bathed in humongous popularity in the early 2000's, heavy metal seemed to return to visual kei's forefront. However, there is one band that added the charm of a more vintage metal sound, yet still maintained a mainstream friendly visual getup. That band would be NoGod. Making their semi-major debut in 2006, and making their major debut two years later, NoGod made a name for themselves with their out there costumes and their melodic, yet still rather heavy, style. On their third album, "Kakera", NoGod manage to slide a bit away from the superb album that is Gokusaishiki, but still maintain and produce one hell of an album.
The album opens up with the dark "Koudou", which then blends into the album's first official track, "Shinzou". Frontman Danchou decides to break away from his usual style, and instead decides to take a much more chaotic and harsh route. A highly effective song that blasts the listener into NoGod's world at full speed. The next track, "Hiki hi no Chikai", is reminiscent to the American hard rock rebirth back in the mid 2000's (think of bands like Breaking Benjamin & early A7X). Not saying that it's a bad track, but the would-be average track is saved by the emotional vocals by frontman Danchou, which makes it a tolerable listen. The next track, "Shounen to Chizu", is another pretty average track, with very few technical elements thrown in. These lack-of elements makes the track sort of dull, and not even the highly effective vocals of Danchou can save this one. "Nagusami no Sora" is a track that centers around a spacey and lonely kind of setting, and that sort of brings the album back to a respectable status. That is only because the hollow and atmospheric sound of the track goes wonderfully with the style of Danchou. The progressive track is without a doubt one of the strongest tracks on the album.
Around the time "Rouyoku" starts, the typical style starts to wear heavily on the listener. Not much to say about "Rouyoku", except the fact that it... well, is pretty much identical to the style of many of the earlier tracks on the album so far (with the exception of "Nagusami no Sora", of course). "Kimi ga Kureta Shiawase to Kimi ni Sasagu Namida" is another breakthrough track in the album, as it experiments with the hollow-like sound that was apparent on the superb "Nagusami no Sora" track, which makes it a keeper automatically. Not to mention, this track shows off the skill of the fellow NoGod members, and is a ridiculously impressive instrumental track. However, the next track, "Kakusei", is, without a doubt, one of only TWO tracks that virtually save the album. This track's intense, yet charmingly melodic, structure, is basically what separates NoGod from the rest of the visual competition. In other words, this track virtually defines and condenses the overall best of the band in a little less than 5 minutes. However, the album falls back a bit with the next track, "Kajitsu wa Warau", which reflects the album's earlier style, but still maintains a sort of beauty to it, which doesn't make it a total waste. However, the album is skyrocketed once more with the track, "II-Kaigi", which greets the listener with blazingly intense guitars, before stomping off into the metal epica. The track once again saves the album, along with "Kakusei", from a mediocre fate. Just a kickass track. Also, the guitar work in this track is arguably some of the most impressive in visual kei history (or at least in recent visual kei history). hide would be proud. The album tones down a bit with "Kimi ni Okuru Itsudemo Kienai Shi", which, while being a much more mellow track, inserts emotion back in the album, and sort of cools down the listener's head from the incredible "II-Kaigi" track. The album then closes with "Ai", which reflects the mellow style of "Kimi ni...", but also has much more of a bite to it. A fitting closing track to a surprisingly awesome album.
While NoGod may not be the most popular visual kei band around today, they are certainly one of the most talented bands in that field. With sheer band brilliance and non-overbearing, yet still admirable, technicality, their third major debut album proved to be a highly worthy listen. While not as much of a mindblower as their previous album ("Gokusaishiki"), the album is still a damn good listen, and is recommended to any true metal fan around. A solid release for a solid band.