Album: ‘Last Patrol’
Artist: Monster Magnet
From: New Jersey, USA
Label: Napalm Records
Availability: iTunes, Rs 130 (available October 21, 2013); Stream on SoundCloud.com
Meat and potatoes. Yellow daal and steamed rice. Aloo-Puri. Home cooked, comfort food. Simple, easy to digest, delicious, and most importantly, forever satisfying. It nourishes, delights, lifts your spirits, and stays with you.
You can slot in Monster Magnet’s tenth album, ‘Last Patrol’ in the same category. Here, the sludge lords from New Jersey turn the clock back to give you a smattering of their past. A tasty collection of nine songs (eleven if you include the bonus tracks) that are more psychedelic, spacey and atmospheric than their last few releases.
Produced by frontman, Dave Wyndorf and rhythm guitarist Phil Caviano, ‘Last Patrol’ roughly follows the classic early 90’s Monster Magnet formula. A rather distinctive, slow start that casually builds up to an overwhelming wall of sound, infused with some excellent guitar solos and Wyndorf’s twangy-yet-manly vocals. ‘End Of Time’, ‘Bummer’ and ‘Last Patrol’ hypnotise you, and legally take you to higher states of being. The acoustic ‘Paradise’ harks back to the Magnet’s biggest hit ‘Dopes To Infinity’, while the Donovan cover is churned with all the doominess the band can muster up.
Besides the songs, what ‘Last Patrol’ does exceedingly well is that it retains all the fuzzy, vintage sound that the band was known for. The record sounds and feels natural, as if the band jumped in together in their practice pad and hammered out everything using just analog recording devices. It has all the textures of an oil painting where you can see the brush-strokes, and none of the flat-lines of a digital painting, even though it may be pixel-perfect.
Those with a penchant for experimentation may not find anything new here. The band largely sticks to its comfort zone. But, that’s not a bad place to be in. Take it or leave it, you know just what to expect from Monster Magnet. ‘Last Patrol’ is a welcome addition to the discography, and a reminder of times when the future was bright, and lives weren’t that complicated. Like an old friend, or home-food that you reach out to when you’re down in the dumps and feeling blue, ‘Last Patrol’ will always keep you company when you are craving for something you know can’t go wrong.
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