Mastodon
The Hunter


4.0
excellent

Review

by tsomitso USER (1 Reviews)
October 15th, 2011 | 24 replies


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Four albums after the magnificent “Remission” and Mastodon still manage to create something great yet challenging!

Being a big fan of their previous works, I was quite anxious to hear their new effort. They had never failed so far and I was sure that they would come up with something equally great. You see, each of their albums made you wonder of what they would come up with next. Whether that was the psychedelic atmosphere of “Crack the Skye” or their brutal beginning with “Lifesblood” they would always deliver something unique.

The album starts rather smooth I would say. Not in terms of heaviness. “Black Tongue” is an excellent starter with its big evil riff spreading through the song. The clean vocals add an epic atmosphere and the whole song seems like a combination of “Oblivion” and “Iron Tusk”. By saying smooth, I mean there is nothing shocking or different for a Mastodon fan. It sounds like a typical song from this band.

But right after that the smoothness ends. “Curl of the Burl” is a rather strange song. At least for Mastodon is. It almost sounds like a Queens of The Stone Age song. The chorus is totally rock (or even pop) oriented with its sing along oh-oh. It was a surprise that was partly calmed after hearing Troy in “Blasteroid” screaming “I wanna drink some f***ing blood”.

It would be meaningless to describe each song, but some of them should be mentioned. “Stargasm” and “Bedazzled Fingernails” have a totally eerie vibe. Especially the keyboards make you think you travel with a gloom intergalactic spaceship. “The Creature Lives” just shouts “I’m on drugs” from very far. “Spectrelight” on the other hand, is a totally kick ass song that grabs you and doesn’t let go until it ends. This must be the third or fourth song that Scott Kelly does the vocals in their discography. In ten years time they will probably have enough songs to make a whole record with him alone singing.

What the album demands from the listener is time. It will take several listens to truly appreciate it. Forget what has been said about a much simpler album. In some terms of song structure it might be, but it is one of the albums that are best appreciated with headphones on. The production helps this attribute of the album, strong yet clean, it allows you to easily tell who’s playing what. The vocal section seems to be the most worked of all the other parts of the album. Each one of the three members (only Bill Kelliher is left out) has progressed vocally and you can tell the difference. The only thing you can’t tell easy is who is singing each time. They have a similarity in their voice.

So, what is so unique they delivered this time! It’s quite simple. Each song stands on its own. They don’t need a concept this time. They don’t need big intros for each song like “Oblivion” or “The Czar”. They get to the point straight away with every song. You can shuffle the track list and still have a great album.

Yet there are three major flows.
“The Ruiner” is among the top five songs of “the hunter” along with “stargasm”, “hunter”, “bedazzled” and “spectrelight”. It's heavy, epic, with big vocal hooks and it would give a better balance between the heavy and the soft side of the album. I mean, why was it left out? It should be replaced with “octopus” which has similar structure with “dry bone valley” and “all the heavy lifting” and is equally heavy, yet a bit boring. It would fit perfectly right after “Dry Bone Valley”.

Also what's with the artwork? The limited edition (which I bought) has really nice artwork and it fits great with their previous artworks. The standard edition is pretty lame in my eyes. Sorry, but it seems quite average compared to the limited edition artwork.

The bonus DVD is a waste of money. Six minutes “making of” plus eighteen minutes “track by track” commentary. Really. Thank you! Thanks for being so generous! “Blood mountain” and “crack the skye” making of were one hour long with a lot of details. Now all we see is Dailor talking jokes for the songs! It seems like a commercial clip. It doesn’t have anything to do with a proper “making of the album”.

Well except these three missteps the album is worthy of their legacy. You might prefer one album over another. But while maintaining the basic feel of Mastodon, each album is quite different and unique. That's a rare and difficult thing for a band to accomplish. Just check out how many bands put out the same record under different name every year.


user ratings (1990)
Chart.
3.7
great
other reviews of this album
1 of
  • Systemunfolded (3.5)
    Blasteroid? Stargasm? I suppose next it'll be Constipllation...

    BugZoid (4)
    The sound of expansion....

    drewcordova (4)
    Brief, accessible, songs with thundering drums and crunching riffs. The Hunter is a must f...

    Will C. (4.5)
    "The Hunter" offer listeners another chance to hear a new side of Mastodon, reinvented bas...

  • Nicholas Johnson (5)
    The Hunter will some day be launched into space, and will be deemed responsible for billio...

    Jake C. Taylor (3.5)
    How exactly does a band supplant old for new, or prog for succinct? They simply don’t....

    Adam Thomas STAFF (4)
    The workhorse chronicles...

    Eli EMERITUS (4)
    "The Hunter" is everything a great metal album should be, as Mastodon have shed their more...

  • BigHans (4.5)
    Masto-pop? You bet your ass....

    Edwin Damen (4.5)
    Mastodon continue to challenge themselves, and doing so without losing any bit of consiste...

    Dakota West Foss (4)
    I'm not exactly sure what a Stargasm is, but I'm pretty sure I just had one....


Comments:Add a Comment 
tsomitso
October 14th 2011


6 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

First review ever!

Piglet
October 14th 2011


4665 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Review needs some major reformatting

tsomitso
October 14th 2011


6 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

meaning?

Piglet
October 14th 2011


4665 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Well at least the paragraphs are spaced out now.
But seriously, I don't know where to begin. Maybe spell check it to start off with? I can't really interpret what you're trying to say, for example

"WHY??? Six minutes making of plus eighteen minutes track by track? Really? Thank you! Thanks for being soooo generous!! Blood mountain and crack the skye making of were big with a lot of details and stuff . Especially crack was great. Now all we see is Dailor talking jokes for the songs!! And six minutes? I mean...commercial clip? Sad."

"Spectrelight gave me goosebumps.straight from leviathan kinda song. Heavy fast and with crazy changes!!! But when it came out it quite troubled me!!! Octopus, thickening, beddazled, creature lives were pretty strange songs. I love 'em now all except octopus. This song should be replaced by the ruiner!!

All I see is song names, exaggerated exclamation and question marks and bad English. It's like you did it in Spanish, put it in Google Translate, then copy + pasted that straight into here. I'm not trying to be mean, but just edit through it.

tsomitso
October 14th 2011


6 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Great. I'll try to rewrite and arrange it better.Thanks for the advice. If you find anything else wrong please let me know.Thanks!

Deviant.
Staff Reviewer
October 15th 2011


31620 Comments


Question 1: how old are you?
Question 2: is English your first language?

Digging: Theo Parrish - American Intelligence

FearThyEvil
October 15th 2011


12758 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Answer deviant because those were my questions too. You need to space after a period too which I noticed you don't do at all.

Puzzles
October 15th 2011


3065 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Dude, no offence, but I wrote better reviews than this when I was 11. And by better, I mean better structure, spelling, grammar, punctuation and cohesion.

Puzzles
October 15th 2011


3065 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I mean, the majority of this thing doesn't even make sense.

Cursiver
October 15th 2011


48 Comments


"It's like you did it in Spanish, put it in Google Translate, then copy + pasted that straight into here." This could be used as the best incorrect grammar insult ever.

FearThyEvil
October 15th 2011


12758 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I agree Puzzles this is the worst review I've ever seen so far on this site. I couldn't even make it through the first paragraph.

Scoot
October 15th 2011


17914 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

someone tell hanson we've found his newest reading material

Digging: Renounced - The Melancholy We Ache

Aids
Contributing Reviewer
October 15th 2011


24098 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

terrible summary

keep at it but yeah, this review is quite below average

Digging: Mitski - bury me at makeout creek

Aids
Contributing Reviewer
October 15th 2011


24098 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

"someone tell hanson we've found his newest reading material"

haha YES let's bring it back. I would whole lotta love that.

WhiteNoise
October 15th 2011


3253 Comments


"Mastodon still can not be categorized.They are a genre on their own"

I might sound crazy but I'd probably call them Metal...

InFiction
October 15th 2011


3713 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

"I mean, only Metallica and slayer have failed production wise."

This dude has only ever listened to three bands.

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
October 15th 2011


3502 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

It's poorly written (kind of fan boy-ish) and you don't care at all about capitalizing letters. Also, I would pay a lot of money to have the wooden-carved "mule staring somewhere", it's amazing

Digging: Motorpsycho - The Motorpnakotic Fragments

tsomitso
October 15th 2011


6 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

No english is not my first language!

tsomitso
October 15th 2011


6 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

If I find a way, I will delete it.I didn't translate it and these are not the only bands I know.And I can dislike this mule if i want to.But seriously I should delete this review or write it again!

DeadBeat
October 15th 2011


529 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I've read worse reviews, this one is pretty bad tough



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