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South Florida alt-metal rockers Nonpoint soldier on

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  • Nonpoint at Phase 2

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    In 2006, Nonpoint's revved-up version of Phil Collins' classic hit "In the Air Tonight" appeared on the soundtrack to director Michael Mann's film adaptation of the 1980s TV series "Miami Vice."

Posted: Thursday, August 8, 2013 7:30 am | Updated: 2:16 pm, Mon Aug 12, 2013.

Since the early 2000s, when they got off to a promising start with the release of their major-label debut, "Statement," on the now defunct MCA Records, members of Nonpoint have been more or less permanently stuck somewhere just shy of a mainstream breakthrough.

During that time, the band has made several appearances at Ozzfest, the wildly popular tour heavy metal's elder statesman, Ozzy Osbourne, brought to arenas and stadiums around the country.

In 2006, they had the good fortune of landing their revved-up version of Phil Collins' classic hit "In the Air Tonight" on the soundtrack to director Michael Mann's film adaptation of the 1980s TV series "Miami Vice."

Even after the hard rockers emerged from the burgeoning South Florida alt-metal scene, they continued to deliver album after album, all of which entered or peaked at respectable positions on the Billboard Top 200 sales charts.

But, like most artists who manage to keep themselves moving forward despite the constant ebb and flow of the music business, lineup changes, various recording contracts and other trials and tribulations were inevitable.

"At some point, people don't want to be away from their families, or the road isn't exactly for them," vocalist Elias Soriano said by phone last week before the band's show in Pennsylvania. "For us, this is all we want to do. We have families and children, but our families and our children are a part of this with us. It's something that we've chosen, and there's still a lot more music to write."

With that in mind, Soriano and Nonpoint's other principal, drummer Robb Rivera, hit the reset button after the lengthy touring cycle in support of their 2010 LP, "Miracle," came to an end.

They revamped the lineup by bringing in guitarists Dave Lizzio and Rasheed Thomas and bassist Adam Wolosyzn — who'll be in town with Soriano and Rivera for their performance at Phase 2 Thursday — and quickly began working on the quintet's self-titled follow-up to "Miracle" at Groovemaster Recording Studios in Chicago.

Enlisting the help of Grammy-nominated producer Johnny K, who’s had some success behind the console with fellow nu-metal contemporaries Disturbed and Staind, the disc showcases the band's fondness for explosive rhythms and head-banging riffs.

Released in the fall of last year, it finds Nonpoint sticking to the basic blueprint of previous efforts, anchored by Rivera's pounding percussion, Soriano's smooth yet stinging delivery and the rest of the gang's frenetic fretwork.

"The new guys are [expletive] machines," Soriano said. "And, you know, I see no slowing down of that at all. I let them do their thing."

"Left For You" is a hard-hitting track that tackles the familiar theme of a broken relationship. Primed with a driving backbeat and layers of thick distortion, Soriano emotionally wails, "There isn't anything left for you, left for you/That will make me want to stay/There isn't anything left for you/Anything left for you but an enemy."

Elsewhere, most of the band's songs start with intense, biting guitars and rolling, visceral drums that steadily build into radio-ready exercises of tightly wound production.

The thunderous riffery, for instance, on the groove-driven stomp of "I Said It" provides a solid foundation for their patented, aggressive style, while Soriano's guttural roar on the fervent "That Day" overwhelms the senses with a heavy dose of dynamics and urgency.

It's just the sort of ripple effect Soriano and his crew are hoping will propel them well beyond the realm of what they’ve achieved thus far.

"We have our goals in mind," he said. "I want the feeling that my band gives people to be as worldwide as it possibly can. There's a lot of places around the world that we haven't hit. And those are things I want to make sure we do before we even start thinking about maybe closing up shop. I plan on doing this for the rest of my life."

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