Review : GRAND MAGUS – "Monument"

Grand Magus – Monument
Release date: 2010Sep28 (US)
Label: Metal Blade Records
Rating: 3.5/5

Grand Magus is a doom metal band from Sweden and this album is their follow-up to their 2001 self-titled debut. This album was originally released in 2003 on Rise Above Records. I was impressed with their debut album and I’d like to see how this stacks up against it. One change is the song length, with the majority of tracks over the 5 minute mark. ”Ulvaskall (Vargr)” starts off with a soft, haunting feel that gives way to thundering guitars. It’s an interesting way to start off this album with JB’s vocals taking center stage. “Brotherhood of Sleep” is another strong track that has many of the same elements seen on the debut album (a touch of blues, precision). As with the debut, this album gets off to a rather dull start.

“Baptised In Fire” is slow and ominous with a hint of blues. There are short breaks within the song structure that attempt to liven things up a bit. Still, I can’t help but feel slightly bored. “Food of the Gods” attempts to salvage this album with an intro similar to that for Black Sabbath’s “Iron Man”, flowing into a very Zeppelin-esque time signature. It’s a breath of fresh air in comparison to the rest of this album thus far. “He Who Seeks…Shall Find” makes one last attempt to redeem Monument. It plods along, changing up slightly at 4:40 and gaining just a smidge of blues, but it’s too long and utteringly boring altogether. Honestly, I feel that Grand Magus took a huge step back on this album. They haven’t really broken any new ground, which is too bad because Grand Magus showed potential. You could check out Monument, but you’re better off sticking with their debut.

FCC: None
Try: 1, 36

01. Ulvaskall (Vargr)
02. Summer Solstice
03. Brotherhood Of Sleep
04. Baptised In Fire
05. Choofer of the Slain (Valfader)
06. Food of The Gods
07. He Who Seeks…Shall Find

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