MASTODON

"Once More 'Round the Sun" (Reprise; 2014)

Reviewed by Jeff Rogers

This is the sixth studio disc from heavy metal hitters Mastodon. I've been listening to their music since they've been cranking it out and I'm digging on this release as well. Reading about the recording process via the members of the band, I learned that it's got a lot of bottom but also plenty of fuzzy guitar. You can hear the hits and feel the jabs. The artwork for "Once More 'Round The Sun" is pretty cool too.

This disc also has some funky vids to accompany the tracks "The Motherload" and "Asleep In The Deep." They are definitely worth checking out if you love a little visual with your audio. Since everybody in the band lends their voice beyond their instrument you get a great range of emotion to the songs. I'd say it gives a layer that singo and screamo just can't match. There are guitar solos all over this disc and that's one of the things that keeps me coming back to Mastodon time and time again.

Snag these tracks: "The Motherload," "High Road," "Chimes At Midnight," and "Ember City."

Mastodon: Troy Sanders - vocals, bass guitar; Brent Hinds - vocals, lead guitar; Brann Dailor - vocals, drums; Bill Kelliher - rhythm guitar, backing vocals.

Check them out here - http://www.mastodonrocks.com.

"Crack the Skye" (Relapse; 2009)

Reviewed by Snidermann

I discovered a lot about Mastodon when I reviewed "Leviathan." I really liked them when I first heard that record and they have just gotten better with age. 

Top-notch production values mix with dark and strangely expressive songs are par for this band and that makes them a must to any fan of great hard rock.  I have to admit that I used the printed lyrics on the CD cover to follow along and I am glad I did; it made the experience even better. 

The name of this hearty recording is "Crack The Skye" and, when you listen to this recording, you will be stunned at just how great this band is.  Another thing I liked about the band is well, frankly the name  ... I mean, come on! Mastodon, how can you not love that name?

Smart music full of gloom, doom, death and despair. "Crack the Skye" connects on so many levels and that's what makes this one of the best CDs I have listened to this year. 

For more information, check out http://www.mastodonrocks.com/.

"Leviathan" (Relapse; 2004)

Reviewed by Snidermann

"Leviathan" is my first foray into Mastodon and let me tell you I was duly impressed. Mastodon portrays a wide range of emotions from song to song that kept my interest throughout and instantly made me a fan. If all their other releases are even close to this one, then this band's entire catalog is well worth the expense.

This is the real deal: fun and killer songs that are hard to describe, but really enjoyable. I can just image this band live, I bet they put on a killer show.

I've listened to this disc over and over to get this review written and I think I'll spin it again right now. It's that good!

For more information, check out http://www.mastodonrocks.com/.

"Remission" (Relapse; 2003)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

Mastodon's "Remission" sounds like what the bastard child of Sleep and Dillinger Escape Plan might sound like. The music is that heavy, ambient, stoner-ish crush that Sleep masters while the songs are written and performed with the intense, raging, technical style of DEP. I guess Mastodon could also fall into the Math Metal category but - since I have no idea how to identify that type of music except by what other people tell me - I don't think I can tell you why.

Bottom line is that "Remission" is heavy, pounding, powerful stuff. If you're looking to take over a small country, you might not need more than a wall of Marshall amps and a copy of "Remission."

The final track on the CD is a razor sharp, sledgehammer of a cover of Thin Lizzy's "Emerald." Also included in this edition is a live DVD of the band at the Masquerade in Atlanta, GA on December 1, 2002. As DVDs go, it's not the highest quality, but it does give you an idea of the band's explosive onstage prowess.

Mastodon: Brann Dailor, Brent Hinds, Bill Kelliher, Troy Sanders.

For more information, check out http://www.mastodonrocks.com/.

Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Revised: 15 Mar 2017 23:33:43 -0500.