Review: MUTOID MAN – ‘War Moans’ [Album Stream]

Artwork by Santos Illustration

Just this past Friday, the New York trio of Mutoid Man released their second full length record ‘War Moans’ to shred the faces off of the public. The record was released via Sargent House. It was mixed by Kurt Ballou of Converge and mastered by Brad Boatright. This band has been on my radar since releasing their masterful debut EP in 2013 titled ‘Helium Head’. The technicality, tenaciousness, and epic riffage of Mutoid Man immediately caught my attention. The constant onslaught of mind-boggling song compositions still stand out as much as the first time I heard them. The band continued to grow to be one of my favorite rock bands with their follow up (also their first full length record), ‘Bleeder’. Stephen Brodsky (Cave In) and Ben Koller (Converge) manage to combine their other band’s sounds along with Nick Cageao’s killer bass tone to create something unlike anything else you will here anywhere else. If you haven’t heard about this band, you will soon. You can stream the album below and then buy it here after having your face melted off.

Photo by Nick Sayers

Mutoid Man always makes sure to include one of the more explosive songs on the record as the first track to kick your teeth in from the start (see “Gnarcissist” and “Bridgeburner”). The case is no different here with “Melt Your Mind”. That bass drum kicks in along with speedy shredding from Brodsky with a strong chorus. One thing I really like about this band is that they don’t try to stretch songs out. Sometimes being a shorter song makes it more dynamic and a better experience for the listener. “Micro Aggression” is fast between vocals but doomy/stoner rock like during the verses. The rhythm section is going hard as hell in this track with phasers running wild towards the end to create a sound of absolute chaos. The first track I heard from this record was “Kiss of Death” when they released the music video for it a few weeks ago. It instantly had me pumped for the new record with a dark, groovy sound while also featuring some guitar work from Kurt Ballou of Converge, who also mixed the record as previously mentioned above. The second half of the record features many more special guests including Marty Friedman and Chelsea Wolfe (on different tracks, of course). Meanwhile, I’m sitting here listening to “Irons in the Fire” wondering how in the world Brodsky manages to play these incredibly difficult guitar pieces while also effortlessly belting out these incredible catchy vocals. Some would assume it’s just because it’s a studio recording but he absolutely nails all the tracks live too. I’m hoping to catch their show one of these days. The title track featuring Marty Friedman playing lead guitar doesn’t disappoint. His tone is recognized from the start and it is amazing to listen to one of the band’s more thrash-like tracks with yet another musician adding his contributions. Chelsea Wolfe makes her eerie presence felt on “Wreck and Survive” with her strange, soothing voice and a haunting guitar melody to go along with the song. It’s very different from the previous track but still fits because of how diverse the sound of Mutoid Man is. Wolfe makes another appearance on the final track of the record along with Kurt Ballou (Converge) and Ben Chisholm (Chelsea Wolfe, synth) also making their second appearances. “Bandages” is the longest song on ‘War Moans’ and is still under 5 minutes. The most atmospheric track on the record is beautifully put together with melodic guitar and passionate vocals from Brodsky and Wolfe. The guitar solo contains a large amount of feeling and emotion put into it, something that seems to be missing from a lot of music in recent times. Mutoid Man has released what is the perfect sophomore album to an incredibly difficult record to follow. They continue to be one of the bands in rock/metal willing to push the boundaries of just how experimental the genre can become. When people say everything has been done already, they clearly haven’t listened to Mutoid Man. Mutoid Man‘s US tour with Helms Alee kicks off in Boston, MA tonight and finishes up in Denver, CO next month. Full tour dates are listed below. Also check out the full album stream listed below. Be sure to follow the band on Facebook for more updates on upcoming music and news on more tours.

Mutoid Man is:
Ben Koller – Drums
Stephen Brodsky – Guitars/Vocals
Nick Cageao – Bass

‘War Moans’ Track List
01. Melt Your Mind
02. Bone Chain
03. Micro Aggression
04. Kiss of Death
05. Date with the Devil
06. Headrush
07. Irons in the Fire
08. War Moans
09. Wreck and Survive
10. Afterlife
11. Open Flame
12. Bandages

MUTOID MAN – ON TOUR W/ HELMS ALEE:
June 4 – Boston, MA @ Great Scott
June 6 – Brooklyn, NY @ Saint Vitus
June 7 – Baltimore, MD @ Metro Gallery
June 8 – Detroit, MI @ El Club
June 9 – Chicago, IL @ Subterranean
June 10 – Indianapolis, IN @ Black Circle Brewing
June 12 – Dallas, TX @ Curtain Club
June 13 – Austin, TX @ Barracuda
June 14 – Houston, TX @ The Studio at Warehouse Live
June 15 – Baton Rouge, LA @ Spanish Moon
June 16 – Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade (Hell)
June 17 – Orlando, FL @ The Social
June 19 – Raleigh, NC @ King’s
June 20 – Philadelphia, PA @ Underground Arts – Black Box
July 6 – Seattle, WA @ Neumos
July 7 – Portland, OR @ Hawthorne Theater
July 8 – San Francisco, CA @ Slim’s
July 10 – Los Angeles, CA @ Resident
July 11 – Santa Ana, CA @ The Constellation Room
July 12 – San Diego, CA @ The Casbah
July 13 – Phoenix, AZ @ Rebel Lounge
July 14 – Las Vegas, NV @ Beauty Bar
July 15 – Salt Lake City, UT @ Metro Music Hall
July 16 – Denver, CO @ Larimer Lounge

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About Low Gain

I'm just a teenager, living in Southern Illinois, that loves music in general. I love attending festivals as it feels like everyone comes together as a giant family. I also look forward to hearing new music and passing it onto the masses. In my free time I play guitar, basketball, and attend high school.

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