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Album Review

Mastodon - Crack The Skye
Produced and Mixed by Brendan O'Brien
Recorded by Nick DiDia
Additional Engineering by Billy Bowers
Assisted by Tom Tapley and Darren Tablan
Mastered by Bob Ludwig

6 out of 5 mics!

I've been reading reviews of this album lately and people are writing about how this is Mastodon's "Metallica moment". Are these jerks serious? Enough with the lame comparisons. Rolling Stone is the worst when it comes to this shit, which is certainly to be expected considering what they promote. I've even seen several metal magazines (names withheld) make the same lame comparison to Metallica. This is a result of the Mastodon boys working with Brendan O'Brien, bringing the vocals forward, and incorporating a bit more melody into the insanity.

All those reviews are horseshit, meant to appeal to people who waste their time reading a Jack Johnson, Amy Winehouse, or Killers review. Good god almighty.

Quite simply, Mastodon's music is brutal and complex. Yes, it's progressive. Oooooh. the dreaded "progressive" word. Get over it. Progressive music is better than everything except The Beach Boys, The Beatles, and a few later bands all involving Mike Patton.

As does any superb album, this one takes several listens before most of the subtleties are revealed. Many of these subtleties actually occur within the vocals. Harmonies are present for the bulk of the album.

This album is phenomenal from any angle: production, songcraft, outright heaviness, complexity, originality.

Engineering and production are top notch, marrying a raw sound with a very produced one. Kind of Brendan O'Brien's as well as Mastodon's trademark.

Mastering by Bob Ludwig is mastering by Bob Ludwig. Duh.

In the running for best album of the year.