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Mos Generator

The Late Great Planet Earth

Review by Gary Hill

It seems certain that this is not the most obvious choice for inclusion under the “progressive rock” banner. The truth is a lot of the group’s music is more closely related to the type of stoner rock that’s heavily influenced by Black Sabbath. I made the choice to put them on prog because a lot of this also calls to mind Pink Floyd< King Crimson and Djam Karet – three bands who definitely do fit into prog rock. This is a great CD! That’s really all you need to know.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2008  Volume 4 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
On The Eve
Odd pulsating textures lead this off. As it builds it feels very much like 1970’s Pink Floyd. We’re almost two minutes in before it changes from this format. Even when it does it still maintains some Floydian tendencies, just with more teeth behind it. It gets more of a stoner metal feel to it as it carries on. The vocals are definitely in that format. We get a drop down to mellower material mid-song that seriously makes me think of Pink Floyd. Eventually we get a return to harder edged sounds, but even then it has more of a progressive rock bent to it. There is an interesting section where they drop it way down to where it’s moving at about the pace of a tortoise, or perhaps due to how heavy it is I should say “an iceberg.” This segues directly into the next piece.
Crematorium
With a title like “Crematorium” you expected cheery? This is a slow mellow grind. As the vocals join this seems to me almost like a near perfect blend of early Pink Floyd with Radiohead. This is just over two minutes and segues directly into the next number.

Six Billion People Dead
For those who don’t know,  the population of the Earth is somewhere in the general neighborhood of six billion. This pounds in heavy and dark seeming like a more powered up version of the previous track. This has some weirdness and turns Crimson-like at times. It’s heavy but I definitely wouldn’t call it “heavy metal.” It is perhaps a bit like Radiohead, though. There is a cool harder rocking bit that has a good modern rock and roll feel to it. It is seemingly connected to the next piece.

Opium Skies
This pounds in with metallic fury but drops down to a stripped down bass guitar driven motif that feels a lot like Black Sabbath. There is a false ending and then they power this out with that type of sound well maintained. Feeling a lot like Sleep, this is one track that is pretty much not prog at all. They turn this out into one heck of a cool jam later.
The Myopic
Once again this feels like an extension of the track that preceded it. This is faster and powerful. It moves to more of that Black Sabbath inspired sound. This is another track that’s pretty much prog free, but man, this thing is a killer rocker.
Closed Casket
Coming straight out of the last track this is another killer Sabbath-like piece, but it’s got a bit mellower feeling to it. They twist this out later to a section that has one of the most Sabbath-like riffs on show but yet the vocals are unusual.
Fall of Megiddo
This keyboard oriented track is another that feels a lot like Pink Floyd. It’s a cool spacey jam. It gets quite melodic during its run and is a great way to bring us back into the progressive rock zone. We get a tasty Satriani-like guitar solo on this track.

Zero to Infinity
As this rises up from the previous number it takes on a bit of a twisty sort of feel. We still hear plenty of the Black Sabbath like sounds, but we get some riffs that are more like modern King Crimson. It’s heavy but oh so tasty. It shits to mellower territory for a while and then pounds back out.
The Late Great Planet Earth
Rising directly up from the last piece this is another pounding powerhouse that calls to mind Sleep and Black Sabbath quite a bit. We get more weird material that’s not that far from modern King Crimson later. They take us through a number of changes before linking into the next piece.
Golden Chariots
Dark psychedelic sounds that are not the different than some of Djam Karet’s music start this out. It almost shrinks rather than grows and we hear some early Pink Floyd at times.
Exit The Atomic Age
This screams out from the last piece. It’s metallic, but also challenging and again feels a bit like modern Crimson.
The World Set Free
As this comes out of the previous one it is in the form of a dark ambience. The grows a bit but stays quite textural in nature. It drops back even further and then seems to exist only in sound effects with muffled sounds of music.
 
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