Mindfucker (Napalm Records)
By Mike Delano
The now-ubiquitous Marvel movies have been getting increasingly spaced-out and cosmic as time goes on, moving from the (relatively) grounded tales of Iron Man and Captain America to the gloriously bonkers universe-spanning adventures of last year’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and Thor: Ragnarok. It’s ironic that Monster Magnet, who professed their love for that cosmic Marvel magic with references in their songs to Jack Kirby and Ego, The Living Planet, seem to be moving in the opposite direction. They’ve gone from tripped-out, psychedelic fare like Spine of God and Dopes to Infinity to a more straightforward rock ‘n’ roll sound on Mindfucker, their 11th album. Truth be told, there’s nothing on here that sounds drastically different from the sound they’ve stuck with pretty consistently since 1998’s Powertrip, but much of it is so lean and no frills that it could pass as a Supersuckers album. That’s no bad thing, but Dave Wyndorf & crew are usually at their best when they think a little more expansively with their sound. There’s a little bit of that here, from the pair of slowed-down Angry Dave ruminations “I’m God” (“I’m God, and you’re lucky to be alive”) and “Drowning” to “When the Hammer Comes Down,’ the ultimate Angry Dave fire-breather where he reads the riot act to the suckers, jerk-offs, and fools who have wronged him. But the riffs are roaring throughout, especially on the title track and the anthemic “Want Some.” Unlike the best Monster Magnet albums, this set might not linger in (or fuck with) your mind long after the record stops spinning, but while it’s on, it’s on.