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Mastodon – Hushed and Grim (2021) [Official Digital Download 24bit/48kHz]

Mastodon – Hushed and Grim (2021)
FLAC (tracks) 24bit/48kHz | Time – 01:26:17 minutes | 1,16 GB | Genre: Metal
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Reprise

The double album is a high-risk, high-reward exercise that many artists have broken their teeth on. How do you make a long piece of content both digestible and exciting when you have so much to say? Mastodon does not seem to have troubled itself with such questions or to have been daunted by the challenge. They just did what came naturally. Hushed and Grim is first and foremost a tribute to Nick John, a close friend and manager who died after a painful battle with cancer in 2018. The four musicians thought he was a man who richly deserved an album. This was the source of their inspiration, which gave birth to 15 songs spread over almost an hour and a half.

Hushed and Grim’s two-disc length is mainly due to its long duration. There is no two-part concept at work here, with, say, one side dark and the other brighter, or one side electric and the other acoustic… No, this album is incredibly coherent throughout and can be enjoyed from start to finish without guessing at any artifice or pretences behind the generous tracklist. Mastodon lend its incredible sense of writing and melody free rein, coupled with some devastating firepower, somewhere between metal, stoner and progressive rock, all delivered masterfully.

Ferocity and melancholy combine from the opening track Pain with an Anchor, before the band unleash on a formidable and uncompromising Savage Lands, with a detour into ballad, by way of the sublime Had it All for which Kim Thayil (Soundgarden) pays a visit, to lay down an inspired and appropriate solo. A record that highlights the incredible vocal work done by Troy Sanders and Brann Dailor; Bent Hinds having taken a back seat for the duration of this majestic sonic journey. There are no weak points, no lapses of taste, despite running to a length that usually leaves some room for some filler or slack. Mastodon succeed in producing an album that is as sublime as it is ambitious. It can be savoured all in one sitting, as it flirts with the best of prog without ever falling into cliché (Peace and Tranquility), right up to the grandiose closing track Gigantium. This album of the year is a slab of material that can be savoured with disarming ease. It is made by one of the greatest metal bands of the last twenty years, if not the best. – Chief Brody

1. Mastodon – Pain with an Anchor
2. Mastodon – The Crux
3. Mastodon – Sickle and Peace
4. Mastodon – More Than I Could Chew
5. Mastodon – The Beast
6. Mastodon – Skeleton of Splendor
7. Mastodon – Teardrinker
8. Mastodon – Pushing the Tides
9. Mastodon – Peace and Tranquility
10. Mastodon – Dagger
11. Mastodon – Had It All
12. Mastodon – Savage Lands
13. Mastodon – Gobblers of Dregs
14. Mastodon – Eyes of Serpents
15. Mastodon – Gigantium


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