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Mastodon - Crack the Skye CD (album) cover

CRACK THE SKYE

Mastodon

 

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

4.05 | 488 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Andy Webb
Forum & Site Admin Group
Admin / Heavy Prog Team
4 stars Quintessence

Mastodon is well known as one of the most powerful bands in the modern progressive metal scene. With a fresh, creative style, young, fierce spirit, and the capability to make incredible music, they have a lot to offer. Through four studio albums, the band has shown their technical ability, willingness to experiment with their sound, and amazing ability with the music they make. On their latest offering, Crack the Skye, the band displays a much mellower, progressive sound, full of incredible experimental dissonance and sludge metal overtones. The entire album is an experimental powerhouse, packed to the brim with the band's finest music crafted yet. Overall, this album is truly a marvelous showing of 2009 and easily the band's best.

One thing that is obvious about this album's music even in the first few seconds is the infectious dissonance that is perfectly insinuated between the melodies and harmonies. The band's compositional quality is not that of what one would hear on an everyday progressive metal album, which makes this album truly unique in a really spectacular way. The band crafts their music in such a way as to keep that epic metal that they're known for while procuring a wonderful progressiveness about their music as to appeal pretty much any experimental metal fan.

The whole atmosphere of the music on this album is also quite incredible. To augment the dissonance about their music, the band inserts very subtle and appropriate filler aspects similar to what The Mars Volta has done; they use very quiet and subtle strings, chorus, and mellotron/Hammond fills to really fill in the gaps of their playing in a truly incredible way. It adds spectacular colour and depth to the music, and making the entire album a real blast to ride on. The whole album is brimming with genius compositions, and the great sludge- inspired insinuations add a nice flavor to the already experimental metal. Overall, musically, this is a truly wonderful album, and the band's best so far.

In the end, Crack the Skye is easily one of the better metal albums of 2009. Chock full of fantastic melodies (sludgey and scratchy but still fantastic), a wonderful experimental feel, two sublime epics (Czar and The Last Baron), and so much more. The band has truly shown their true colors here, expressing their willingness to morph the very sound they pride themselves on and their ability to delve into uncharted territory in the musical spectrum. Overall, this is truly a great album, and I recommend it to every metal fan out there. 4 stars.

Andy Webb | 4/5 |

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