Local Albums Reviewed by a Millennial: Monobrow- Big Sky, Black Horse

Loyal Targians, get ready to get out yer pickaxes and stereotypical miner clothes, because MONOBROW have struck gold with their new album!

They have found the perfect balance in a stoner/doom metal album, with equal parts devastatingly heavy sludgy riffs, acoustic interludes, fast pounding riffage to bang yer head to and slow mind bending power to (still) bang yer head to (slowly of course). Every moment on this album becomes instantly memorable, and after a single listen you will recall every riff. MONOBROW is a three piece stoner/doom metal band hailing from our very own town of Ottawa, who are also an entirely instrumental group. I have heard some complain due to the lack of vocals, but I think this is the path for groups playing in this style. Vocals in stoner metal were never the high point of the genre, and could feel out of place if too aggressive (for example, the barked chanting on SLEEP’s DOPESMOKER) or could feel passive and too laid back, and out of place or inactive.

The riffs on this album, simply put, are amazing. They can sound absolutely massive, but also sound simply beautiful and can put you in a trance. The lack of vocals actually is, once again, an asset in this case, as when you close your eyes, all manner of images, from mammoths crushing mountains beneath their hooves (do mammoths have hooves? Eh, whatever) to wizards enchanting forests will circulate in your mind, and with the intriguing & mysterious song titles you are free to conjure up whatever mental images are inspired. THESE MOUNTAINS DON’T WANT US HERE is easily one of the best song titles I’ve ever heard, and when listening to that particular song I can simply let MONOBROW lead me down a road of wonder to a riff filled land.

Some stoner metal ( and especially doom metal) bands often have song writing that will not be very varied at all, and will simply follow one path and end up overstaying its welcome by becoming long and monotonous. MONOBROW never commits this fatal sin and, as mentioned before, can, without directly telling stories with vocals, can fill you with many different emotions and will keep you interested throughout the album.

In conclusion, MONOBROW have conjured up a masterpiece of stoner metal, and I urge anyone with the ability to seek it out,listen to it immediately, and support yer local stoner wizards!