Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Maria Brink: Intensity in Different Forms

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Maria Brink: Intensity in Different Forms

Article excerpt

In This Moment singer Maria Brink is known for her vehement vocals and confrontational lyrics, and there's no fury to spare on the band's fifth album, "Black Widow." But on this disc Brink also shows that vulnerability is just as intense as aggression.

"I always challenge myself in terms of how I express myself," Brink said by phone ahead of the band's show on Saturday in Montclair. "As an artist you want to evolve and do new things. I think it's very important for an album to have a vulnerable side to it."

Brink bares her soul to the point of exhaustion on the "Black Widow" standout track, "Out of Hell." Accompanied solely by her own piano playing, Brink's tortured vocals carry the emotional tour de force about teenagers living on the streets after enduring childhoods shattered by abuse.

"I wanted the song to be about forgiveness, about stepping into the darkness and learning how to forgive and let go to get out of that place," Brink said.

"Black Widow's" heavier side includes raging tracks like "Sex Metal Barbie," "Sick Like Me" and "Dirty Pretty." "Sex Metal Barbie," driven by vicious guitar riffs and Brink's incensed vocals, lashes out with a hefty dose of sarcasm at stereotypes in the heavy music scene. "Sick Like Me" is a call to arms for the band's fans, while "Dirty Pretty" takes an introspective look at people's expectations and perceptions of others.

The next step

"Black Widow" was released in November and entered the Billboard Top 200 albums chart at No. 8, giving the Los Angeles band its first Top 10 disc. It is also In This Moment's debut effort for major label Atlantic Records. The band's first four albums were released on the independent label Century Media.

"It was a hard decision for us because we had been with Century Media for a long time and we had become a family," Brink said. "But we felt it was time to take the next step."

Atlantic has not tried to pressure In This Moment to tone down its belligerent sound or provocative stage show, Brink said. …

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