'Once More 'Round The Sun' is Mastodon's sixth record, produced by rock and metal professor Nick Raskulinecz, who has worked with a variety of crossover metal bands, including Deftones, as well as proggier outfits like Rush. The record continues to push a version of Mastodon into the public with clean vocals, catchy riffs and an ear for mainstream rock, though certain tracks like "High Road" retain their penchant for sludgy metal with dark tones. Brann Dailor has said what he really wanted 'Once More 'Round The Sun' to be is "huge and weird". Features contributions from the Coathangers and Scott Kelly of Neurosis.
- Tread Lightly
- The Motherload
- High Road
- Once More 'Round the Sun
- Chimes at Midnight
- Asleep in the Deep
- Feast Yopur Eyes
- Aunt Lisa
- Ember City
- Diamond in the Witch House
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8/10 Jack Randerson 3rd June 2016
Atlanta metal titans continue down the more accessible road approach whilst still maintaining their own sound.
Released 3 years after their 5th studio album "The Hunter" which was not only a commercial success but also managed to received universal acclaim and ended up on many end of year lists, "The Hunter" was also the first none-concept Mastodon album & Once More Round The Sun follows this trend.
The album starts of with "Tread Lightly" (inspired by TV series "Breaking Bad") featuring a very crisp guitar sound and a rather conventional song structure, picking up from where "The Hunter" left of. Tread Lightly sets the stage for the first half of the album by focusing heavily on huge sing-along chorus anthems and less so on their unconventional song-structures and more progressive elements of the old days. However, with that being said, this is Mastodon we're talking about, nothing is completely conventional, there's some very interesting drumming and guitar work going on throughout, some fantastic riffs, such as the one on "High Road" which happens to be the first mega riff of the album. You then have "Chimes at Midnight" which paints a stunning introductory landscape and features some exceptional musicianship.
The album goes into a more softer and progressive style from "Chimes" onwards, similar so the chronological order of their previous albums. The track "Aunt Lisa" features harsh vocals, something quite rare for Mastodon these days & also pays homage to the classic Ramonoes song "Blitzkreig Bop". "Asleep In The Deep" and "Halloween" are mid-tempo rockers that thunder along in incredible technical guitar riffing. The album closes on the corrosive epic doomy "Diamond In The Witch House" by far the longest song on the album, clocking in just below 8 minutes long and by far the most atmospheric. Featuring guest vocalist Scott Kelly's tortured shouts which fit the dissonant descending guitar riffs and tribal drumming .
Throughout the years, Mastodon has been evolving into a more accessible band, with Once More Round The Sun being their most radio-friendly yet.
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