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The Mound Builders - The Mound Builders

The Mound Builders
The Mound Builders
by Martin "Doomed" Desbois at 27 January 2019, 7:45 AM

Lafayette, Indiana, THE MOUND BUILDERS, released a brand new full length album.It's been a few years since they released something out. After 2011's Stranger in a strange land and "Wabash War Machine"(2013), a cassette split and a split CD. They craft what we could call "sludge rock" to vulgarize. I found elements of hardcore, punk,stoner,rock,a nd even metal and doom in their influences.The music is energetic, dirty, mean in some way and the lyrics or themes exploited are ranging from space, spirituality, ancient history (mound builders refers to an ancient tribe that may share a lot with mayans civilization or so, except for they created houses and temple off earth directly.Kind of amazing inspiration to dig to).

"Torchbearer" is the opener.It starts smoothly demonstrating the sound of the band gradually, bass is a little overdrive powered dirty, while the guitar is pouring chords slowly,and finally we  are engulfed in a sea of cool rhythm and groove. The vocals are harsh and hurtful, in a good way. It reminds me of WEEDEATER, it's raw , groovy , moving and showing no mercy. Swamprock……oh it gets more fast , hardcore like punk.A little like BLOOD FOR BLOOD. The backing vocals are very punk oriented with their "oh—-ohhhh-ohhh" and the choirs too, but with major groove. The guitar works pretty well putting us on the edge of rock n' roll.

"Hair of the Dogma" is very different.It starts like an hardcore tornado, even a thrash metal approach in the riffs. HATEBREED meets LAMB OF GOD. Nothing more to say than it's a powerful one, making me want to slam in the snow outside. "Separated from Youth" gives a doomy tone to the record. The bass is over exposed and boomy, i like it. The guitar is over saturated, heavy, CROWBAR fans ready! EYEHATEGOD too! The guitar solo reminds me of some old CORROSION OF CONFORMITY too. Badass.

"Acid Slugs" as low tuned guitars, very low tuned.T his is bad, this is mean, this is slow, this is GOOD. After a few minutes it gets hyperactive and fast paced.The vocals are reminiscent of some POISON IDEA to me. Some cool guitars effects are used in the last minute or so of the song, kind of a little psych. "Star City Massacre" has a stoner riffin' and a groove laden beginning just before it reaches is ignition point and spit out a thunderstorm of anger and harsh vocals. Breaks that are used in thrash metal and older hardcore. I like it. Brooklyn like core influence. The backing vocals choirs that reminds me of some old BIOHAZARD in some way .But not entirely that it has a lot of mixed influences from metal too. Cool hybrid.

"Regolith" has a fast paced intro, stoner on speed. Very groovy and dynamic. It's not a long one (three minutes in total). The screams are far more scratching the board. And oh yeah some wah-wah solo that makes me want to throw myself out of the window. Crazy shit. Hearing this live that would be a beer bouncing and smiling around friendly time. ROCK N' ROLL MAN! "Broken Pillars" is a break after that party animal track right after. Slow inducing madness, distorted headbangin' ready track. I really like that one. It's simple, effective, a formula already been used in the past, a deja vu that's a pleasure to live again.T hey should tour with CROWBAR. I really mean it.

"Vanished Frontier" is the last track. The vocals a a little melodic here. I can feel a desire to be a little more clean. The guitar is a little generic but does the job. The most of the work pass through the vocals. The drums are on point and well done. The choirs once again makes me want to shout in the mic with the band and share a cold one. Well done guys, it's not extremely original but very appreciated.

Songwriting: 8
Originality:7
Memorability: 7
Production: 7

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Torchbearer
2. Hair of the Dogma
3. Separated from Youth
4. Acid Slugs
5. Star City Massacre
6. Regolith
7. Broken Pillars
8. Vanished Frontier
Lineup:
James Henry Voelz - Vocals
Brian Boszor - Guitar
Ninja Neight Malher - Guitar
Robert Ryan Strawsma - Bass
Jason “Dinger” Brookhart - Drums
Record Label: Failure Records and Tapes
     


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