Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Monolith - "Mountain" (Album Review)

By: Richard Maw

Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 18/03/2016
Label: Final Gate Records


“High Horse” is a rampant beast which rocks hard at mid tempo. “Moonshine Medication” positively stomps and swings (hard to do) and has tales of alcohol soaked glory and despair. “Lies and Deceit” has an upbeat feel to the riffs and much like everything else on the record it is more rock than doom. “Tide” continues the record with a bit more of a laid back feel but then the track brings the doom in with a great feel to it.  Hailing from Germany may not give these guys the cred that goes with a Californian Zip Code, but that does not matter to me; this is good stuff and ahead of other more hyped acts in terms of production, delivery and material.


“Mountain” CD//DD//LP track listing:

1. Mountain
2. Vultures
3. Standing Tall
4. High Horse
5. Moonshine Medication
6. Lies & Deceit
7. Tide
8. Blackbird

The Review:

Traditional Doom mixed with good old heavy rock is a tricky beast to get right. Go direct to the source too much, and you may come off as retro hipsters. Try to modernise and be accused of not being traditional at all! Monolith tread a careful path here. This is traditional heavy rocking doom but it also benefits from quite a bright and clean production. The vocals are of the traditional sung variety (think Ozzy, not Dio) and the drums rumble very convincingly- it sounds like they were recorded in a good sized live room. You can hear the hiss over the track at points when the band drops down to bass only, so analogue points are surely scored as the band lean towards the retro stylings beloved by some and derided by others.

There is plenty of doom to be had in the likes of “Vultures”, while the band make like 70's rock behemoths on “Standing Tall”. Hailing from Germany may not give these guys the cred that goes with a Californian Zip Code, but that does not matter to me; this is good stuff and ahead of other more hyped acts in terms of production, delivery and material.

“High Horse” is a rampant beast which rocks hard at mid tempo. “Moonshine Medication” positively stomps and swings (hard to do) and has tales of alcohol soaked glory and despair. “Lies and Deceit” has an upbeat feel to the riffs and like much like everything else on the record it is more rock than doom. “Tide” continues the record with a bit more of a laid back feel but then the track brings the doom in with a great feel to it. There are strong hooks on this one and for me it stood out. Acoustic guitars come to the fore on“Blackbird” and closes the album with three and a half minutes of very seventies rock, complete with harmonica. It is a fitting coda to an album which falls into the doom bracket, but also offers much in the way of traditional seventies styled hard rock. For fans of bands of either genre.

“Mountain” is available here



Band info: facebook

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