April 20, 2001

We Say No

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As soon as I received the assignment to review Monster Magnet’s new album, God Says No, I went straight to my metalhead neighbor for an enlightening listening session of the group’s earlier albums as well as some other bands in the same, hard rock genre. My neighbor helped me to overcome my reluctance and discover the inventive, psychedelic, metal sound of Monster Magnet. Listening to their newest album, it becomes clear that Monster Magnet departs from their original style in an attempt to update their style while maintaining their slightly retro feel.

The band earned their rightful fame through developing their own take on “space-rock,” a compelling combination of trippy yet hard melodies, with plenty of blazing, distorted guitar and screaming vocal riffs, sounding something like Soundgarden meets Black Sabbath, mixed with a touch of The Doors. Once again leather-clad and ready to rock, Monster Magnet tries to expand its traditional stoner, alternative sound by bringing heavy metal into the 21st century on its fifth album. Adding some new elements to their musical composition, such as synthesized, electronic effects and beats, Monster Magnet aims to diversify the bands musical reach, but this attempt at modernization hurts the band more than it helps, diluting their quintessential “stoner-metal” vibe.

Although it may be refreshing to hear some visceral beats in an age of polished pop, God Says No falls into the clich