Sitting here listening to the new Baroness double LP Yellow & Green, I am lost in a trance. The swirling rhythms and sounds are almost other worldly. This is classic metal in the vein of Hendrix or early Sabbath, even a little Zeppelin thrown in but after going through the filter of Fugazi. This is by far the album of the year and in many ways beats Mastodons the Hunter if nothing else on a the sheer grandiose quality. It’s almost operatic. The only thing is this is nothing new from the boys from Savannah. Twinkler sounds almost exactly like Steel That Sleeps thee Eye from their previous record. And I’m okay with that. There is a higher production quality and richer sound on this outing that I think the band greatly benefits from. They deserve the best recording technology can give them. Although the familiar sounds are what keep this album from being one of the best I have ever heard. Peter Adams, John Baizley, and Summer Welch are amazing, amazing musicians. They are masters of their craft and their vocal harmonies are phenomenal. As the double album finished I let it roll right into the Blue album and into the Red creating a massive soundtrack to me doing nothing today.
I call this Doomsayer Tunes, because the music I label as such would make a perfect soundtrack to the end of the world. Be it a hectic and chaotic Zombie Apocalypse. Or a slow death by crumbling economies and famine. The end of everything you know or the end of the world as we know it. Same thing. If you were in a jeep riding across the barren nuclear wasteland with nothing but a solid gasmask and an IPod shuffle; which albums do you think would make the cut for forever. I tell you right now Baroness: Yellow & Gold are going in there, (not that their Red and Blue albums wouldn’t already be in). There are songs on there for moments of urgency, songs that seem to uplift and offer a way out of the darkness, but this is sludge. This is dark, this is a journey through hell before reaching heaven. Just like I like it. This album is also filled with winding stoner metal that suits me just fine as well. I am fine sinking into the couch and staring at the ceiling for 45 minutes without realizing it. If I were 15 still this would be the record me and my friends got super high, and sat in my grandmothers basement silently to! No doubt about it. I would also like to take this album on a cross country trip. Through the back roads though off the beaten path where you see the real America. Broken down and out of work, not just for the last 3 or 4 years but for the last 20. There is a underbelly that has ben in a recession since the 80s thanks to the original Reganites.
I’m not sure what 2012 will hold, I’m sure it won’t be the literal end of the world, although events in my life make it feel like it’s the end of mine. I know one thing, and that’s this album must be playing when what ever shit hits the fan situation occurs next. This record was filed with a lot of the sentiments and feelings I myself am currently experiencing. The end of my 5 year relationship, moving across country, back to the dirty south. Finding myself alone and surrounded by friends at the same time. Trying to piece together what it is my life will become now. Failing miserably, ending up in isolation and despair, glimpsing the light only to miss it’s rays. Strong, strong emotions played throughout the music. Perhaps I’m putting a lot of myself and my own feelings into the music, but isn’t that what great music is supposed to do.
What can I say about Mastodon? They are the biggest metal band in the world right no, and when the new album comes out Tuesday they may become one of the biggest bands in the world. It is hard to even pigeon-hold them in the “metal” box, they may have begun as a metal band, but now (much to the chagrin of metal-heads) traversed into more of a broader almost unrecognizable musical genre. Part Rush, part stoner-metal, part Winding jam band. If you can’t wait until Tuesday, the band has offered up the entire album in one long continuous video on YouTube. Warning: do not start it unless you have time to finish it, because you will not be able to turn it off. The album entitled The Hunter, is the bands best work yet. What’s crazy is that I say that each and every time they release a record. How does a band this good continue to get better and better I’ve had the pleasure of seeing them live several times and I can say without a shadow of a doubt that they are each masters of their instruments. These four guys put out a sound so unbelievably rich and lush, its hard not to get lost in it. This new album is made for a acid fueled trip across country. I wish I had a car (and a license for that matter) to ride up the California coast listening to this album over and over again. I know there will be a backlash in the hard-core metal scene against this trippy-dippy album, but this stands to break the band out of that scene, and into the larger scene as one of the greatest rock bands of all time. I would put this up against any Led Zepplin album-it’s that good! So far my favorite track has got to be The Creature Lives, followed very closely by The Sparrow. God I wish I had a ten strip and blunt, and a bottle of rum. Fuck!