Monster Magnet - "Monolithic Babies"
(SPV 092-69430 CD)
Uploaded to Aural Innovations: March 2004
This is the first Monster Magnet CD since 2000. It has been a long wait while Dave looked for a new label, sorted out some new members and got the house of Magnet back in order. While many people were disappointed in God Says No (not me), Dave has come back with a strong message that this band means business and is here to rock like hell. This CD takes you back to the power of songs on Powertrip but also goes for a more psychedelic production like Dopes had (not like Spine of God, we could only wish!). The CD opens with "Slut Machine", which is a balls out rock and roll tune influenced heavily by the Stooges! Dave even plays some piano. "Supercruel" is up next and has the classic Powertrip record style powerrock. Dave knows how to come up with a catchy chorus and hook. The production on the CD is very good and a bit less clean than the last few and more psychedelic as well. "On the Verge" starts with an acoustic guitar that is similar in style to "Cage Around The Sun", but this soon changes as the power guitars and again some piano take over. A sort of 60’s inspired sound takes over with some cool distorted sounds as well. The single, "Unbroken", is next and a song written for the radio audience. "Radiation Day", now that has a monster guitar riff if I ever heard one. This back to Dopes to Infinity style GIANT riff. Killer stuff and great psychedelic guitar soling from Ed. This goes straight into "Monolithic Babies", which has a monster Bass line that the song is built upon. The Bob Calvert song, "The Right Stuff", is next and this is back to pure balls out heavy psychedelic space rock. The David Gilmour cover, "There’s No Way Out Of Here", from his first solo LP is next and a very good rendition. "Master of Light" is something totally different, with a programmed sounding drum and a groove that slowly builds and get more and more powerful. I like the lead guitar lines on this song. I am just let down that the chorus breaks down the flow of the song and is now the fourth song on the CD with a chorus very similar to this. "Too Bad" will remind people of "Blow 'em Off" to start but it really is a different animal. "Ultimate Everything" is another psychedelic monster of a mindblower. Reminds me of "Third Alternative", my favourite song from Dopes to Infinity. The CD ends with the instrumental, "CNN War Theme". What can I say. Dave knows how to walk that thin line between a commercial band and one that does just what the fuck they want to make psychedelic rock for the next century.
If you get the double digipack you are treated to a bonus DVD with the uncensored video for "Unbroken", and an incredible long version of "The Right Stuff" with Dave flying an aircraft through space. It also included a very good interview with Dave and two live videos from London December 2003 ("Monolithic Babies" and "Radiation Day").
For more information you can visit the Monster Magnet web site at: http://www.monstermagnet.net.
Monolithic Babies is distributed by SPV. You can visit their web site at: http://www.spv.de.
Reviewed by Scott Heller