Mastodon continue to leave most of the competition trailing in their wake. This album continues where The Hunter left off but at the same has plenty of nods to their past. New producer Nick Raskulinecz has carried off the same trick here as he did with Rush, he has encouraged the band to embrace and reference their past whilst at the same time pushing their music forward. The essential heaviness is still there, you can hear bits that would fit on Leviathan, Blood Mountain and Crack The Skye, but at no point do you feel that this a step back to those albums. The riffs are still there, the raging arpeggios up and down the fret board, Brann's drumming is still ferocious and out of this world. The vocals maybe a bit cleaner than those first few albums but who can blame them for wanting to make their albums a bit more accessible, and let's face it this is hardly some kind of commercial sell out, try playing this to your average Coldplay fan and watch their brain melt as they try to cope with savage complexity of this music. There is no point in trying to pick any outstanding tracks, as you listen to the album more and more you slowly realise that every track has much to admire. This is progressive metal of the highest order.