Bold and evocative. Lean and focused. This is an album full of intangible brilliance.
Mos Generator – Electric Mountain Majesty
Black Sabbath. Black Sabbath. Black Sabbath.
Right it’s out the way. Let’s continue. There is no point in beating around the bush. Mos Generator eat, sleep, smoke and breathe the kings of our genre. The Sab’s influence is tattooed on the DNA of this band. But, then, aren’t they present on all of our DNA?… If you’re a metal fan then the answer to that is … yes.
There has been a massive renaissance within the doom, retro and stoner movements over the last few years. Just last year saw some frankly astonishing examples of this in the form of Clutch’s ass kicking ‘Earth Rocker’; Uncle Acid and The Deadbeats’ phenomenal ‘Mind Control’; Monster Magnet’s return to the psychedelic realm with ‘Last Patrol’; and …eh .. ’13’ by the kings themselves (let’s not get into the Bill Ward thing at worst it is an awesome Sabbath album by 3/4 of the original band.) Not to mention band’s like Ghost, The Sword, Red Fang, Blood Ceremony, The Devil’s Blood (RIP Selim), and Witchcraft who have all, over the last few years, channelled the very best of those early hard rock and metal pioneers and brought them back to life without sacrificing any of the values and power that made them so potent in the beginning. Yes, they are sonically inspired by the originals, but they have a heart (black, of course), passion and honesty that affords a credibility that washes away any sense of them being derivative. Mos Generator unequivocally fall into this camp too.
‘Electric Mountain Majesty’ opens with the killer ‘Beyond The Whip’ which thunderously kicks things off, with a power and authority that sweeps you away and never lets go. This sets the tone for the album; whether it’s the ominous violins that welcome ‘Into the Fire’, the elephantine plod of ’Spectres’ or the scuzzed out, raw stoner groove of ’Neon Nightmare’; Mos Generator have been able to channel the best bits of doom and stoner into one glorious hairy beast of an album. At its peak it draws equal inspiration from the majesty of the seminal Black Sabbath albums ‘Master of Reality’ and ‘Vol. 4’ but with a warmth of sound that brings it into the 21st century, akin to the aforementioned contemporary stoner gods.
Though it is on the final three piece of ‘Electric Mountain Majesty’, ‘Black Magic Mirror’ and ‘Heavy Ritual’ where the album truly peaks, closing out in astonishing form. The title track, simply put, kicks all kinds of ass. I defy anyone with any love for classic hard rock not to wear a great shit-eating grin when the opening riff smacks to the jugular; there is more than a hint of ’Snowblind’-ness about the songs bridge, but Mos Generator wear their influences on their proud denim sleeves so it’s no bad thing. ‘Black Magic Mirror’ is so dirty you need a shower after listening to its drawn out tones before it segues seamlessly into the lurching punch to the ball sack that is ‘Heavy Ritual’. ‘Heavy Ritual’ is an exceptional example of how to write memorable and effective hard rock; a simple but thoroughly head-bangable riff with some really articulate and considered playing alongside band mastermind Tony Reed’s best vocal performance on the album.
If you like heavy metal or hard rock, do yourself a favour and check out Electric Mountain Majesty. You won’t regret it.