Saturday, 28 July 2018

Mountain Of Smoke - Gods Of Biomechanics (Album Review)


Release date: July 14th 2018. Label: Self Released. Format: DD

Gods Of Biomechanics – Tracklisting

1.Incept 02:21
2.Tannhauser Gate 03:40
3.Orion's Shoulder 02:52
4.Caesium Beams 03:46
5.Zhora 04:20
6.Morphology 02:55
7.Retirement 03:03
8.Leon 04:25
9.Tyrell 03:19
10.. Gods of Biomechanics 02:53

Members

PJ Costigan- drums
Alex Johnson- pedal steel and synth
Brooks Willhoite- bass and vocals

Review

Making an album on seminal classic science fiction film Blade Runner is mighty bold and impressive by anyone’s standards. However doing another album based on the same film is downright insane. Who could pull such a task off. Well, Mountains Of Smoke for a start. The hard edged Sludge/Stoner Metallers are back with their new album – Gods OF Biomechanics.

An intriguing and thrilling progressive album that takes many themes from the landmark movie and adds a nightmarish surreal industrial Doom/Sludge/Stoner Metal sound with hints of warped electronica. The opening two tracks Incept and Tannhäuser Gate is what you expect from the band with fast-paced drone like riffs weaving psychedelic sounds into the realm of Blade Runner.

The vocals from Brooks are heavily digitised which is natural for an album such as this. Mountain Of Smoke have devilish fun blending the ideas of the movie against a backdrop of heavy Doom/Sludge based themes. Mountain Of Smoke already tried this idea on their self-titled debut album back in 2014. I remember listening to the album back then. I remember not being fully sold on the whole concept and sound of the album.

However I have no such problems with Gods Of Biomechanics as Mountain Of Smoke have created an album that captures the dystopian tone of the classic movie. The heavy industrial sounds and bleak lyrics may leave you feel slightly down but the frantic punk based energy of Orion’s Shoulder and Caesium Beams show a band not afraid to experiment with their sound.

Maybe the album is partially influenced by Nine Inch Nails and Author & Punisher as the heavy industrial sounds start to overpower the Doom/Sludge/Stoner Metal vibes that appear on the early stages of the album.

Mountain Of Smoke have included a high amount of samples from the movie and they appear throughout the album, including the legendary “Tears in Rain” monologue. Mountain Of Smoke deserve credit for trying something different with this album. it’s not the most easiest album to listen to as there is a lot going on. The songwriting is good but there are a few songs that don’t quite work as they possibly should. However the heavy industrial music and mechanical stylised vocals save the day.

The real question that needs to be asked is: Who short first – Han or Greedo. Damn, Sorry, wrong Harrison Ford Movie.

No, the real question(s) I want to know is what version of Blade Runner inspired Mountain Of Smoke to write this album to. We do have about 6 or 7 versions to choose from. My second question is -Will they release an album based on the classic sequel Blade Runner 2049.

Anyway, I digress. Gods Of Biomechanics is a thrilling and spectacular heavy album.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Words by Steve Howe

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