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Mastodon: Leviathan

Damn. Nothing prepared me for the crushing assault that is the latest release from Mastodon. Leviathan is a brutal, thunderous, sonic hurricane, showcasing a band that has all the chops in the world to go along with their deft yet aggressive songwriting skills. One look at the gorgeous cover painting reveals a band that has something "epic" in store for the listener, and the music more than lives up to that expectation.

To call this music raging and unrelenting is a severe understatement. Mastodon have all the muscle of early Metallica, the attitude of Motorhead, the exploratory nature of King Crimson, the pomp of Manowar, and the technical texterity of Rush. Think of them as the worlds greatest metal/prog/hardcore band, as they combine all these genres into one churning, mindblowing sound that is like nothing you have ever heard before. Songs like the near 14-minute "Hearts Alive" juggle between atmospheric metal and juggernaut thrash riffery, while "Blood and Thunder" just flat out pounds you into submission with lethal vocals, sledgehammer rhythm section, and brutal guitar riffs. Elsewhere you will find other killer tracks like the intricate "Megalodon", the pummeling "Seabeast", and the progressive doom of "Iron Tusk", complete with dinosaur guitar dirges that would make any fan of Black Label Society happy. Complex time changes run rampant throughout the albums ten tracks, so be prepared for a wild ride that never lets up. One twist is the spacey, Pink Floyd influenced instrumental closer "Joseph Merrick", a real testament to the bands statement that many of their heroes do not necessarily lie in the metal genre.

Metal's next big thing? Mastodon very well could be, judging by all the positive press they have been getting. But the proof is in the pudding as they say. Leviathan is a bold and mature statement that will no doubt turn heads in both the metal and the prog community.

Track Listing
1) Blood and Thunder
2) I Am Ahab
3) Seabeast
4) Island
5) Iron Tusk
6) Megalodon
7) Naked Burn
8) Aqua Dementia
9) Hearts Alive
10) Joseph Merrick

Added: November 2nd 2004
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Mastodon Website
Hits: 5389
Language: english

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