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Mantis


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Mantis
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Audio CD, January 20, 2009
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Amazon's Umphrey's McGee Store

Music

Image of album by Umphrey's McGee

Photos

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Biography

Since forming on the campus of Notre Dame in South Bend, IN, a little more than 16 years ago, Umphrey’s McGee—guitarist/vocalists Brendan Bayliss and Jake Cinninger, keyboardist/vocalist Joel Cummins, bassist Ryan Staslik, drummer/ vocalist Kris Myers and percussionist Andy Farag—has gone on to perform over 100 concerts annually, releasing seven studio albums and selling more ... Read more in Amazon's Umphrey's McGee Store

Visit Amazon's Umphrey's McGee Store
for 8 albums, 6 photos, and 2 full streaming songs.

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Frequently Bought Together

Mantis + Death By Stereo + Anchor Drops
Price for all three: $40.29

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (January 20, 2009)
  • Original Release Date: 2009
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sci Fidelity Records
  • ASIN: B001NJY65W
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #8,481 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Made to Measure
2. Preamble
3. Mantis
4. Cemetery Walk
5. Cemetery Walk II
6. Turn & Run
7. Spires
8. Prophecy Now
9. Red Tape
10. 1348

Editorial Reviews

Chicago s Umphrey's McGee enters its second decade together with their most progressive, melodic and artistically cohesive album to date. The new album hits streets on Inauguration Day, January 20, 2009, when Mantis casts another Windy City family into the limelight. Over 2 years in the making, Mantis pushes the envelope in composition, arrangement and group interplay. In an Umphrey s McGee first, the album offers 100% new material - a drastic change of pace for a band whose typical modus operandi is to work out the material live on-stage before recording studio versions.

Customer Reviews

This album is worth many listens.
bookman109
All of the songs here are well thought out and the band's vocals have never sounded better.
Steven Sly
When Mantis is at its best, it's an amazing album.
John Alapick

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Ryan Wojno on January 20, 2009
Format: Audio CD
With their latest release, Umphrey's McGee presents "Mantis," an album of new beginnings while still remaining true to their roots. For those unfamiliar with UM, they're best described as the results of tossing several musical genres into a blender and filtering the results through stereo speakers. They can get down and funky, rock out, play the blues and even get a little jazzy when the song calls for it. While most popular on the jam band circuit, the band has been developing a solid following amongst the progressive rock faithful which will only grow with this release.
Despite their jam band leanings, the band remains focused on the album presenting a precise and effective album. At the same time, the opportunity for expansive improvisation is *very* present and the band will no doubt take advantage of this as they hit the road to promote the album.
While gearing up for this review, I listened to the bands debut studio album "Local Band Does O.K." and it is simply amazing to see how far they have come. While a great album on its own, the maturity of the band really jumps out on "Mantis." Inside, the listener is treated to a mix of Beatles, early Genesis and even Radiohead-esque influences but most importantly, a whole lot of Umphrey's McGee. As to be expected, all musicians are in top form which is really exciting considering the superb material the band has arranged to hit the road with. This album will deliver many a legendary UM live experience!
In closing, tight compositions coupled with great, tasty playing will always be a recipe for success in my book and its almost scary to think the only place for the Umphreys Boys to go is UP.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Steven E. Wonchoba on January 28, 2009
Format: Audio CD
It pains me to finally admit this, as I usually have nothing but positive things to say about Umphrey's McGee, but I have to agree with reviewer Mr Stanley, who flatly pointed out that MANTIS is just not as great as many of the reviews on this site are indicating. It's certainly not up to the level of ANCHOR DROPS, SAFETY IN NUMBERS, or the incomparable LOCAL BAND DOES OK.

First of all, let's deal with the much ballyhooed title track. Yes, it's good, but we need to face the fact that just because a song is listed at 11+ minutes, that doesn't automatically make it a spectacular cohesive epic. Without question, "Mantis" (the song) starts out wonderfully with a very aggressive instrumental section that feels like a close cousin to "Wizard Burial Ground". And even when the vocals start ("We believe there's something here worth dying for..."), you can't help but feel like you're in for something really special.

But the song never really delivers like it should. The 11 minutes end up feeling like several 3-minute songs just spliced together. And I honestly don't think that if it were listed as 4 separate songs on the CD that everyone would be going on about how great "tracks 3 through 6" are. Now, in addition to the terrific intro, the final 3 or so minutes of "Mantis" are also very strong, but parts of the song (I'm thinking particularly about the bit from about 3:30 to 4:50) are downright awful. Brendan Bayliss, whose voice is a rare gem among jam-band lead vocalists, gets a little too fancy with the vocal harmonization here, and much of his delivery simply sounds out of key. There's also a slow section from about 6:00 to 8:00 that if it were a standalone song, would never be considered anything better than average.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By dtm on January 22, 2009
Format: Audio CD
As a avid jam band listener these guys have been on my radar for awhile. Their first album "local band does O.K." is fantastic, plenty of jazz inspired jams and serious musical prowess got me hooked. They also had that fun party jam sound of bands like phish. If you havent ever heard these guys order "local band" along with your copy of Mantis.
In a live setting these guys rip. Skilled changes in time signature, blazing guitar solos and captivating "turnabouts" will have you writhing
in musical pleasure. However you wont find many extended jams on this record. Thats not what the boys set out to do with this album. What you have here is a well-crafted, polished progressive rock album that trancends the "jam-band" genre. And personally i think it couldnt have turned out any better. Fantastic production, soothing well harmonized vocals and solid solos sprinkled throughout. If you're familiar with these guys you will enjoy this new record, if your not.....i think you will too. Five stars for my favorite album this year so far.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Steven Sly on November 13, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Umphrey's McGee finally has made a studio album worthy of the incredible talent that this band possesses. Long known for their mamoth live performances, the band's studio albums never seem to have been able to capture the same feeling. "Local Band Does OK", and "Anchor Drops" are both decent studio discs, but do not come close to what the band is really all about live. Their previous studio album "Safety In Numbers" was especially weak in this regard. So, it was with great pleasure and surprise when I popped "Mantis" into my CD player to find that finally these guys had delivered a top notch studio disc. Umphrey's is one jam band who has always forayed into the world of progressive rock from time to time, and with this album they go into full force prog mode. Some jam fans may not appreciate the direction, but "Mantis" is almost entirely a progressive rock album and a great one at that. Long epic tracks like "Mantis" and "Cemetery Walk" parts one and two are the centerpieces of this collection and certainly expand on the band's sound. Some of the guitar parts on this disc are downright David Gilmour-ish in nature and all of the instrumental interplay combine for a seriously complex listen. All of the songs here are well thought out and the band's vocals have never sounded better. "Mantis" is Umphrey's McGee's best studio album to date and will be sure to appear in many progressive rock top 10 lists at the end of the year.
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What is with this javascript cover-image thing?
It's been a while since you have posted this, but just wanted to say that most of the AmazonMP3 albums I have downloaded have the cover-art embedded and it shows up in iTunes and Amarok. I've never tested to see how big the image is, mind you, but it's present.

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