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Mower - "Not For You" (CD)

Mower - "Not For You" CD cover image

"Not For You" track listing:

1. American Psycho
2. Road Rage
3. 10x10
4. The End
5. Look Away
6. Broken Hands
8. General Admission
9. U Turn
11. Not For You
12. LA Riot
13. Zone
14. Seedless
15.California Dreaming

Reviewed by on May 12, 2006

"Guitarist Matt Wannamaker takes listeners on a multi faceted journey as he hammers out riffs from every school of rock in existence"

The sophomore release by San Diego based band Mower is quite appropriately named, Not For You, and unless you are a fan of solid songwriting, catchy hooks that are very singable, guitar work that runs the gamut from Corrosion of Conformity, and Black Sabbath, to 80"s Rock, Aggressive Metal, and Punk, they are right , it's not for you. The album opens the floodgates wide, from the beginning as it belts out the aggressive hook heavy tribute to the Bret Easton Ellis novel, "American Psycho", and never release its hold on you until its ending track the awe inspiring, tastefully aggressive, vocal harmony laced cover of , "California Dreaming".

Guitarist Matt Wannamaker, takes listeners on a multi faceted journey, as he hammers out riffs, from every school of rock in existence. On certain songs he is reminiscent of Peeper Keenan, of C.O.C., while on others his Motley Crue (or some other 80's style rock band) influence is clearly audible. Bassists Chris McCready, and original drummer Ryan Toth, have the musical sensibility to know when to supply tight aggressive rhythmic assaults in places, and when to lay back and allow the atmospheric nature of the song shine through in others, a commodity that is becoming exceedingly rare in todays musical climate of, "look i can really play." Adding even more variety to the mix is the dual vocal assaults of, Moscatello, and Brian Sheeran. this tag team vocal approach has been utilized a lot in the last 6 years, but not always done well, Mower uses their singers contrasting vocal styles to perform a wide variety of genre's and emulate (not imitate) a wide variety of their influences.

The albums shining moments are, the radio friendly-"Broken Hearts," with it's contrasting intertwining vocal and musical harmonies, the earnest angst filled depiction of the riots in Los Angeles from within the confines of ground zero entitled "LA riot." "Zone" a strong singable adrenalin pumping, steroid dosed powerhouse, and of course the cover of The Mommas and the Poppas "California Dreaming," this is an incredible blending of vocal harmonies and tastefully distorted guitars, proving themselves seasoned entertainers and not hacks hiding behind a wall of gain. If your in the market for music more in the vein of C.O.C., Double Drive, with some of the heavier stuff mixed in to boot, then my friend Mower's new release is the album for you.

Highs: Strong hooks(choruses) , and good vocal harmonies

Lows: No solo's

Bottom line: This is a solid album for listeners with a versitile ear, and a love of catchy, yet heavy, songwritting

Rated 4 out of 5 skulls
4 out of 5 skulls

Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)