What do you get when you combine the fury of metal, the attitude of hardcore, the swinging nature of jazz, the groove of funk, the doom laden dirges of stoner rock, and the complexity of progressive rock? Why, The Mass of course! On their second album, Oakland, California's The Mass hit you from all angles through eight kick ass songs that run the gamut of every almost every genre you can think of. With aggressive vocals and intricate instrumental passages, these guys create some serious stuff here that is awfully hard to categorize, yet fully challenging and enjoyable to listen to.
"Cloven Head" is a manic metalcore type piece, yet at the middle instrumental break the jazzy saxophone from vocalist Matt Waters does battle with some complex guitar lines courtesy of Tom "Donnell, who then launches into a melodic and wild solo of his own. Gritty thrash meets hardcore and funk on "Corpse Wielder", while the crazed "Gas Pipe" is grindcore at its best, complete with pummeling riffs & rhythms and screaming vocals. If you dig early Pink Floyd or Van Der Graaf Generator, you'll love the proggy atmosphere of "Meditation on the Some Carcass", featuring more squonking sax from Waters. Doom metal meets jazz on the behemoth stomp of "Little Climbers of Nifelheim", while there's plenty of punk and metal intensity on the rampaging closer "The Bringer", a seemingly bastard child of Van Der Graaf Generator and Saint Vitus. Imagine that!
Math-rock at its most experimental? Could very well be. These guys are onto something, as their music has plenty of angst to please the younger metal & hardcore fanbase, yet it's so complex and "out there" that the prog folks, jazzers, and avant-garde crew might also want to give a listen. Recommended!
1) This is Your Final Dream
2) Cloven Head
3) Corpse Wielder
4) Gas Pipe
5) Meditation on the Some Carcass
6) Ride of the Juns
7) Little Climbers of Nifelheim
8) The Bringer