January 29, 2018

Monster Magnet - God Says No (2000)

Country: U.S.A.
Genre: Space Rock, Psychedelic Rock
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© 2000 A&M Records
AllMusic Review by Eduardo Rivadavia
Like other bands credited with pioneering the stoner metal scene in the early '90s, Monster Magnet continue to drift further and further from the trademark sonic characteristics (distortion, psychedelics, space rock) of the genre they helped create. And after stripping down their sound to a no-frills, streamlined attack on 1998's breakthrough album Powertrip, band leader Dave Wyndorf refused to sit on his laurels when it came time to devise Magnet's fifth album, God Says No. Instead, in a display of massive creative "cojones" and/or utter commercial suicide, Wyndorf leads the group into unexplored territory, and even seems to be having a little fun with it along the way (his sex-drenched lyrical acid-trip fantasies remain as entertaining as ever). The result being that while Powertrip's single-minded urgency and unbridled power seemed to trap the listener behind the wheel of a drag racer on the verge of flaming out, God Says No is arguably the band's mellowest set yet, and certainly their most diverse. With their laid-back grooves and unexpected use of triggered electronic drumbeats, the title track and "Queen of You" are the best examples of this turn of events. And even when they do pick up the pace a bit, tracks like "Silver Future" (also featured on the previous year's Heavy Metal 2000 soundtrack) and the amphetamine surf rock of "Kiss of the Scorpion" never quite lose control on the scale of Powertrip's Stooges-fueled recklessness. Elsewhere, bizarre experiments like "Take It" (featuring synthetic melodies set to karaoke-like drum machine rhythms) and "Gravity Well" (a distorted piece of Delta blues slide guitar topped with Wyndorf's lascivious innuendoes) push the band's creative envelope to the bursting point. Older fans and recent converts alike may prefer the album's second half, where at least some of Magnet's lo-fi, fuzzed-out past and Powertrip's raw, unyielding sonic attack finally surface on tracks like "My Little Friend" and "Medicine" (originally featured on the band's Spine of God album, re-recorded here). But new converts will get to savor all the band's flavors, including space rock anthems like "Melt" and "Cry," which hearken back to 1995's Dopes to Infinity with their familiar-sounding hypnotic riffs. In the end, some may be disappointed by God Says No's all-around sense of restraint, but open-minded fans will have to acknowledge Wyndorf's courageous insistence on breaking new ground with his continually inspired songwriting.

tags: monster magnet, god says no, 2000, flac,


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