Sound — 10
I tell you, this CD really did surprise me. Not once before buying this did I think this CD would turn me into a huge Mastodon fan, but it did. I had listened and even bought some of Mastadon's older stuff, but most of that can't even compare to Blood Mountain. Actually, Remission comes back to mind, once in a while, but it still can't add up to the pure face bludgeoning that is Blood Mountain. The album starts out with the catchy and ripping "The Wolf Is Loose". When I bought this CD, I had a friend with me. I did not think he would really enjoy the band, but I put the CD in anyways. As soon as the blazing fast drum roll came through my speakers, I knew that we were in for a wild ride. He quickly said "This is awesome". Yes, indeed it was. As soon as Hinds and Kelliher hit their first note on the guitar, it's gold. Their whole technique and sound just screams brilliance! As soon as "The Wolf Is Loose" ends, "Crystal Skull" then breaks in. It starts out with a very exotic tribal drum intro and then breaks into an awesome riff followed by the brilliant vocals of Brent Hinds and Troy Sanders. Other songs such as The Sleeping Giant, Capillarian Crest, Circle of Cysquatch, Bladecatcher, Colony Of Birchmen, Hunters Of The Sky, Hand Of Stone, This Mortal Soil, Siberian Divide, and Pendulous Skin continue to show off the sheer brilliance and originality of this band. Brent Hinds really surprised me on this one. Him and Kelliher's riffs are catchy and all-in-all awesome sounding. Where Hinds really shines is in songs like Capillarion Crest, Crystal Skull, Bladecatcher, and Colony Of Birchmen. He will mesmerize you with his blazing fast chickin' pickin' and flat-out killer solo's. Actually, Hinds is not the only shining star on this album; Brann Dailor amazes with his fast and technical drumming. These guys always keep up a pretty fast pace, and he does more than keep up. His phenomenal drumming is part of Mastodon's signature sound, and he is one of the many reasons why this album really stands out to me. My favorite songs on this CD are: The Wolf Is Loose, The Sleeping Giant, Capillarian Crest, Bladecatcher, Colony Of Birchmen, and This Mortal Soil. I actually love every song, but these are my absolute favorties.
Lyrics — 10
Okay, most everyone that knows Mastodon and their members knows that Brent Hinds tends to get his lyrical ideas, well, from lighting up a joint and going to town on it. He has admitted it in many interviews, and it really shows in the trippy lyrics. I, personally, enjoy Mastodon's insane and adventurous lyrics. I believe the whole premise is, from what Brent Hinds has said in interviews, is about a man having to climb this great mountain to place a crystal skull at the alter at the top of the mountain. As he journey's up the mountaintop, he encounter's many weird things, such as a Cysquatch (One of Mastodons' crazy concoctions) and a forest of man-eating tree's. Yes, it's very weird stuff, but interesting, nontheless.
Overall Impression — 10
This album is a masterpiece, in my eyes. They probably couldn't have done better if they'd tried. It's just that friggin' good. From the break-out, ear bludgeoning "The Wolf Is Loose", to the mesmerizing and southern sounding "Pendulous Skin", this album excels in all categories. I usually don't write reviews unless the album truly is worth it, and trust me, this one is. This album has boosted Mastodon up on my list of favorite bands, and they've really seemed to inspire me with their abstract form of Metal. Yes, there are a lot of people who wouldn't consider them to be "teh br00talz!", but that doesn't matter when your are this creative and original. This album gets a 10 in all categories from me. Seriously, if you are even thinking about purchasing this album, don't even waste your time thinking about it! Trust me, you won't be sorry. Oh, and heck yea I would buy this album again if I lost it, because it is worth having in my collection.