Having a reputation as one of the most creative and diverse bands in modern metal, any album by Mastodon was set to be a big release. They are one of those incredibly gifted bands that have such a distinctive discography, every album sounds different to the other, yet has a sound that is definitely produced by Mastodon. Once More ‘Round The Sun is clearly the work of a group of creative genius who love working with each other. Mastodon are a band whose profile just won’t stop rising, and with the album reaching number 10 on the album charts in the UK, they very well may be headlining festivals soon.
Once again, Once More ‘Round The Sun sounds different to their previous work, but with nods to the previous incarnations of Mastodon. Bassist/vocalist/caveman Troy Sanders described the album as a continuation of their previous (and critically acclaimed) release, The Hunter. Guitarist Bill Kelliher acknowledged this too but added it had elements from their debut Remission with some heavier stuff added to the mix. There are elements of all previous albums on Once More, but with exciting new elements too. Tracks “The Motherload” and “High Road”are definitely continuations of The Hunter with epic vocals and catchy choruses from multi-talented drummer Brann Dailor. Second single “Chimes at Midnight” has epic space metal solos similar to that from Crack the Skye, as well as the sludge elements of their wonderful debut Remission.
The beauty of Mastodon is that they combine many influences, be it prog, sludge, alternative rock similar to that of Deftones or grunge like Alice in Chains, then making something remarkable of it. The album is heavy, beautiful, calming, aggressive and just a joy to listen to. If Mastodon aren’t soon headlining festivals then something is going wrong with the metal world. There is so much to take from this album, the solos are just unstoppable, the treble vocals of Troy Sanders, Drann Dailor and Brent Hinds are once again on the finest of forms. They are smart enough not to fight for attention and to give each other space. Some of their vocals aren’t present on certain songs but they aren’t missed as you know they’ll appear when needed. There is something so refreshing about their music, it’s audio bliss. Pure and simple.
With Once More ‘Round The Sun, Mastodon are continuing to do something they’ve been doing for a long time – crush the competition.
Best Tracks: “The Motherload”, “High Road” and “Asleep in the Deep”
1. Tread Lightly
2. The Motherload
3. High Road
4. Once More ‘Round The Sun
5. Chimes At Midnight
6. Asleep In The Deep
7. Feast Your Eyes
8. Aunt Lisa
9. Ember City
11. Diamond In The Witch House (feat Scott Kelly of Neurosis)
Troy Sanders – Bass/Vocals
Brent Hinds – Lead Guitar/Vocals
Brann Dailor – Drums/Vocal
Bill Kelliher – Guitar