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CD review MASTODON "Cold Dark Place" EP

Veröffentlicht am 17. September 2017 von Markus W. in Mastodon, News, Alternative Metal, Alternative Rock, Sludge, Prog Metal, EP, CD Review

CD review MASTODON "Cold Dark Place" EP

(8/10) After having released the highly successful “Emperor of Sand” album some month ago, Atlanta-based powerhouse Mastodon returns with a new EP, providing four more songs which weren’t released earlier. The tunes are the result of work done in sessions for the 2014 release “Once More Round the Sun” as well as for the latest longplayer.

The EP begins with two tracks which have their roots in 2014. “North Side Star” is the opener and represents the atmospheric and calmer side of this heavy rocking quartet. The song is very soulful and the same goes for the following “Blue Walsh”. Mastodon doesn’t put the heavy guitar riffs into the forefront. Instead they focus on a gentle soundscape that includes an emotional depth, creating the intensity needed.

Also "Toe to Toes” starts more silent before a rocking guitar takes over after a few chords played. The song is heavier than the first two ones without really ending up in a metallic blast. However, it’s a terrific anthem that also would have deserved a spot on the original album tracklist.

With “Cold Dark Place”, the title track, we get already to the end of this EP that shows again the width and musical craftsmanship of this four-piece band. An acoustic guitar is dominating the song. Five minutes in length provide you with an almost fragile song that proves the fact that ‘silent’ doesn’t mean ‘boring’ or ‘cliché’.

What else to say. The artwork is done by Richey Beckett and the EP comes prior to some European tour dates. By the way, it’s Scott Kelly, known from Neurosis, who will be part of this tour which creates some extra curiosity and excitement.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. North Side Star
  2. Blue Walsh
  3. Toe to Toes
  4. Cold Dark Place

 

Label: Reprise Records

Genre: Alternative Metal

Release Date EU: September 22nd, 2017

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MASTODON posted a new songs

Veröffentlicht am 4. September 2017 von Markus W. in Mastodon, Classic Rock, Heavy Metal, Alternative Metal, Stoner Rock, Rock, Hardrock

MASTODON posted a new songs
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CD review MASTODON "Emperor of Sand"

Veröffentlicht am 28. März 2017 von Markus W. in Mastodon, Alternative Metal, Stoner Rock, Psychedelic Rock, Alternative Rock, Heavy Metal, Classic Rock, Prog Rock, Prog Metal, News, CD Review

(9/10) My Mastodon trip started with their sophomore album „Leviathan“. This disc made more than an impression and still belongs to my all-time-faves. This was 13 years ago and in the meantime the Atlanta-based band released many more records with an constantly growing supporters base.

„Emperor of Sand“ is the newest work of art, an album that was recorded at The Quarry Recording Studio, produced by Brendan O’Brien who did already the 2009 release „Crack the Skye“. The band uses the story of a wanderer, who’s on a journey through an hostile to life desert and what sounds like a fantasy story is actually a metaphor for the effect and suffering of long-term sicknesses like cancer. In these kind of situations time gets very important, asking the first question: How much time do I have. Mortality becomes all of a sudden a beast that tries to catch hold of you.

The newest longplayer is the most mature one up to date. The four-piece band makes use of so many different styles, bringing them all together on an album that stands with 100% for Mastodon.

"Sultan's Curse", a pounding song, acts as the opener for the album. It's a mid-pace number that has quite melodic vocal lines, interacting with a guitar sound that alternates between heavy riffing and melodic leads. The latter brings a certain classic rock feeling to the table that's well embedded. The next masterpiece is entitled "Show Yourself" which is surprisingly melodic - almost a bit too catchy for my taste. It comes with an alternative rock expression that fits very well; for me the song is the one that’s the easiest accessible on the album.

A track that is very straight-forward too is called "Precious Stone", blending  heaviness and melancholy; all with a kind of late 90’s grunge factor. And if there was any ease in some of the earlier song, this is gone with the first riff of „Steambreather". The almost swinging approach of some of the earlier songs turns into a darker and gloomier one. A hypnotic riff builds the base for the track that belongs to the best ones on the album. You can almost feel the desert heat, making life of the wanderer to a threatening experience between life and death. The song is like a sonic Fata Morgana and belongs to the pearls on this record.

What comes next got the name of "Roots Remain" and it feels like the band going back to the roots. The number is harsher than the earlier ones and especially the beginning feels like going back to the band's roots. The rougher vocals, that makes this tune to heavy pounder, underlines this too. But Mastodon is more than all the mentioned. The band incorporates progressive elements as well. „Candestiny“ is such a song that uses a 70’s progrock vibe, strengthened by the inclusion of a Moog. And as of it should act as a brutal counterpart, it’s „Andromeda“ that stands for the most brute song on the album.

„Scorpion Breathe“ combines hard-hitting drums with immense riffs; all build on a pumping bass, before the first notes of „Jaguar God“ introduce the ending of this awesome album. An acoustic guitar starts off a song that gains intensity with getting really mighty towards the end. It’s a closer that shows again the potential and capabilities of a band that was constantly growing over the last years, permanently increasing their fan base.

“Emperor of Sand” is the expected big shot of a band that developed over time to one of the most influential ones in rock and metal.

 

(9/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Sultan's Curse
  2. Show Yourself
  3. Precious Stone
  4. Steambreather
  5. Roots Remain
  6. Word to the Wise
  7. Ancient Kingdom
  8. Candestiny
  9. Andromeda
  10. Scorpion Breath
  11. Jaguar God

 

Label: Reprise/Warner

Genre: Alternative Metal

Release Date EU: March 31st, 2017

CD review MASTODON "Emperor of Sand"
Photo by Jimmy Hubbard

Photo by Jimmy Hubbard

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CD review KILLER BE KILLED "Killer be killed"

Veröffentlicht am 11. Mai 2014 von Markus W. in Killer Be Killed, Sepultura, The Dillinger Escape Plan, Mastodon, The Mars Volta, Thrash Metal, CD Review, News

(8/10) This is really a cool album. When De La Tierra released their album I expected something like this. But now it's Killer Be Killed who publish an album which grooves like hell and has some real killer tracks.

But who is Killer Be Killed? The project is consisting out of Max Cavalera (Sepultura, Soulfly, Cavalera Conspirecy), Greg Puciato (The Dillinger Escape Plan), Dave Elitch (ex-The Mars Volta) and Troy Sanders from Masterdon. Actually it was Max and Greg who started to work on a few new songs. Funny enough Max used his old 4 track recorder which he already made use of during the sessions for Sepultura's "Chaos AD".

The exciting part of the album is the mix of the different styles that creates something which is not totally new, but very exciting and fresh. It's a cooperation of musicians which are on the same level. That makes the music stand like a rock.

Songs are great. Already the opener is a masterpiece of groove metal. It finds the right balance between heavy riffs and a quite melodic chorus. This track sets the tone of voice for the other 10 tunes on the album. "Face down" comes a bit more aggressive than the opener and has the intransigency of the older Sepultura. An anthem which is right to the point. Another cool track on the album is the more modern metal based "Save the robots". Eventhough it's a bit different it fits perfect into the framework of Killer Be Killed's sound. The song is quite melodic, has a quite cachty melody and could be a harder version of Linkin Park - in their early days. "Fire to your flag" follows and is a total different story. With not even three minutes it's an ultra fast one which gives the feeling of being sucked into a tornado for a few minutes. The closer "Forbidden fire" is the longest track on the debut. It starts very releaxed with some sphereful sound samples and an hypnotic spoken word section. But after a bit more than a minute the songs explodes. The riff kills the silence and make the tune a slow and evil groove monster. This pattern continues throughout the entire track. A well chosen closer for album.

Killer Be Killed are of course no roockies. We have a bunch of experienced musicians who step out the frames of their own bands in order to try out something partly different. A project which can be seen as successful and I hope that we will hear more of them in the future.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Wings of feather and wx
  2. Face down
  3. Melting of my marrow
  4. Snakes of Jehovah
  5. Curb crusher
  6. Save the robots
  7. Fire to your flag
  8. I.E.D.
  9. Dust into darkness
  10. Twelve labors
  11. Forbidden fire

 

Label: Nuclear Blast

Genre: Thrash Metal

CD review KILLER BE KILLED "Killer be killed"
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