Named after a popular 60s toy while influenced by Sabbath, Hawkwind and Captain Beyond, New Jersey’s Monster Magnet first created waves with 1991’s stoner classic Spine Of God. Led by singer-guitarist Dave Wyndorf, the band found a sympathetic label when it signed to Napalm in 2009, scoring with the following year’s Mastermind.
Last Patrol in 2013 elevated the band’s status as fathers of stoner rock (cemented by their music appearing in Sons Of Anarchy) and is now revisited, according to Wyndorf, with “inspirations indebted to mainly hallucinogenic chemicals”. Not a remix exercise but experiments in alternate realities where songs are re-imagined back to 1968 (Mindless Ones) or using Mellotrons for mood changing.
The drugs must have been good, as the set also boasts four new songs, including mysterioso opening instrumental Let The Circus Burn, the band’s elemental sonic panorama on the full beam it traverses through multi-storey reworks, including End Of Time and I Live Behind The Clouds, and cataclysmic flashback newie The Duke (Full On Drums ‘N’ Wah).
With a stratospheric live version of Last Patrol, the set is one experiment which has worked magnificently and could dropkick Wyndorf’s refreshingly open-minded visions up to blowing the universal mind./o:p