Album review by Seraphim Dibble, images provided by Massive Wagons
Earache Records brings you anything but earaches. Massive Wagons has just released their new album, Full Nelson. This marks their third release and their first album on Earache Records. Full Nelson is an album of British hard rock that will take you back to the eighties and nineties within moments.
From the opening moments of “Under No Illusion”, the album does its best to invent time travel. It takes us back to a time of delightfully high-energy songs that you can just relax to. The sound of the album conjures up mental images of good friends getting together to hang out. From its simple and melodic choruses to the catchy guitar riffs, Massive Wagons has produced a sound that comes out as a love letter to bands like Def Leppard. “China Plates” continues this. It is a fast and rowdy romp into hard rock, which is interesting given that the songs before and after are a bit slower in pace. “Billy Balloon Head”, for example, returns to the more Def Leppard feel of the first track. All three songs are solid to play, though.
One thing that Massive Wagons does really well, though, is contrast the different sounds of their songs. They blend in sounds and techniques flawlessly. “Sunshine Smile”, for example, sounds like half Guns N’ Roses and half something entirely new or different. “Northern Boy” is entirely different again, with its clean guitars and ballad feel. The heaviest song yet comes up next, with “Robot (Trust in Me)” sounding perfectly at home alongside other metal artists like Judas Priest or Metallica. It is certainly a talent they possess and use to its full capabilities.
It is also worth talking about the mastering on this album. The guitars are clean and crisp and always audible. You never lose Baz Mills’ vocals in the mix, almost always able to pick out his vocals. The bass is audible and adds just enough rhythm and low end to the melody. And best of all, the drums feel punchy without coming across as overly compressed. Massive Wagons is very good at knowing exactly how to deliver killer music.
Full Nelson is very, very British. From the lyrics to the sound, it sounds like a night at the pub followed by a bout of fisticuffs.The album art is also straight out from the UK, featuring an image of a bare knuckles boxer getting ready to go. If you ever missed the reign of bands like Def Leppard, this is something you want to pick up and make sure you don’t miss it. Pick it up today!