Customer Reviews: 4-Way Diablo
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on November 10, 2007
I'd been anxiously awaiting the release of "4 Way Diablo" for a while now, and from some of the press saying that it was a "return to form" for the band it had me very excited. And this is rightfully so, because when Dave Wyndorf is on in his songwriting, he's one of the best in his craft.

I would also like to preface the coming statements by saying that I love Monster Magnet, and have been a huge fan for some time. Dopes to Infinity has easily earned it's way into my favorite albums of all time, and I absolutely adore everything from Tab all the way up to God Says No. Now Monolithic was something I didn't feel almost at ALL (save Radiation Day and There's No Way Out of Here), and I feel that it was the start of a trend. A trend that this album seems to do it's best to break.

Now the album is not without it's bright points (Monster Magnet, no matter how far from their prime they may be, will never completely fail). It starts off nicely with the title track, which is a good energetic number. Wall of Fire continues the pace and is another upbeat track. Any momentum that the album has going at this point is almost completely wasted with the third track, "You're Alive". I mean, as nice as it is to hear someone repeat that phrase for four minutes, I'd rather not hear it. It really is a terrible track.

However, Dave reigns it back in with Blow Your Mind. It's got a little elevator jamminess to it at the beginning, and carries along nicely. What comes next is probably the best song Wyndorf has written in 7 years, Cyclone. This song would fit in with any of their best stuff, and shows that MM is indeed not going away quietly. Truly epic through and through.

It's no secret that Dave loves to have covers on MM albums, and they're almost always a good addition with a little spin on them. The cover here is a Rolling Stones one, "2000 Light Years From Home". This one isn't any different from the rest as it is a success. Nice and spacey, it doesn't take anything away.

After the unremarkable "No Vacation" comes "I'm Calling You". This one is another throwback to the Monster Magnet of old. It's epic, but doesn't quite get there with the guitar.

The quality of the rest of the album tapers off a little bit after this. Solid Gold is ok, but nothing to write home about. Freeze and Pixillate is a nice/spacey instrumental. A Thousand Stars is pretty uneventful. Slap in the Face is saved by the excellent guitar work by Ed Mundell near the end. The album ends with Little Bag of Gloom. It's short, but it's definitely a pretty good closer.

Overall, this album is probably near the back of the catalogue. It's most certainly better than Monolithic Baby!, but it's probably neck and neck with God Says No. If someone was trying to get into MM, I'd definitely say this would be an album to start with along with Powertrip and Dopes because it touches on some of the best parts of MM, but doesn't quite get there. I've done my best to not outrightly discredit it, but the rest of Monster Magnet's history is just that, monstrous.
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VINE VOICEon January 25, 2008
In my humble opinion, this latest effort from Dave Wyndorf and crew is every bit as potent as their 'Monolithic Baby' or 'Powertrip' discs. Just shows us all how much we can depend on Monster Magnet to pen out such killer heavy space rock. Tracks that had me playing this CD over many times were the in-your-face "Wall Of Fire", "You're Alive", "Cyclops", their good Stones cover "2000 Lightyears From Home", the (almost) ballad -{?} "I'm Calling You" and the total *ss-kicking "A Thousand Years". Line-up: Dave Wyndorf-guitar & vocals, Ed Mundell-guitar, Jim Baglino-bass and Bob Pantella-drums. An absolute must-have. Hope they tour again this summer.
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VINE VOICEon January 23, 2008
The Good
"4-Way Diablo" has a simple yet effective rock riff that mixes well with Dave Wyndorf's deep and smoky vocals. "Wall of Fire" cranks up the energy and tempo to fist pumping levels. "You're Alive" employs a bass heavy riff and a catchy and repetitive chorus. Harmonic background vocals and devilish lead vocals make up the track "Cyclone." The main focus on "I'm Calling You" is the lyrics and vocals. The rhythm recalls the stoner rock of the 70s. "A Thousand Stars" uses faded guitar tones mixed with trippy guitar licks. "Slap in the Face" has an intro that builds anticipation for the sweet rock groove to follow.

The Bad
Nothing notable

The Verdict
Don't expect the programming and effects that you remember Monster Magnet for. 4-Way Diablo features a raw, stripped down version of the group which may just be the perfect niche for them after all.
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on December 28, 2008
You certainly can't complain about Wyndorf and Monster Magnet's consistency. Since 1995's "Dopes To Infinity" the band has spluttered an onslaught of mediocre rock music, each album a bigger fall from grace than the last. This is major criticism, but I really find MM an extensive frustration. Pre-95 they could do no wrong. "Spine of God" and "Dopes to Infinity" are two milestone albums in the stoner scene, full of groove, great riffs and Wyndorf's powerful vocals. Listening to "4 Way Diablo" is just sad. Riffs and hooks made the old MM albums so special, but they don't even turn up here. Ed Mundell manages to carve out some of his most insipid riffs ever, and Wyndorf's chorus hooks are stale and predictable. It's all just safe and harmless. Mediocre guitar-driven rock that breezes over inoffensively.
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on September 22, 2013
Certainly not in league with "Powertrip" or "Monolithic Baby!" or even "Dopes to Infinity" - I rank this with "God Says No" as their weakest album. Only "Wall of Fire" and Slap in the Face" are up to the best of MM.
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on June 4, 2014
Great Monster Magnet sound. This is the 1st album since Dave's "reported" recovery from prescription drugs. That may or may not be true but you can definitely tell the music is more clean and crisp sounding.
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on December 16, 2007
What this Monster Magnet release has going for it: 1] Great lyrics, teeming with attitude and space rock ethos. Lyrics have always been one of Dave W's strong suits. They certainly are on this disc. 2] Strong production, orchestration, and mixing. 4WD sounds SLICK. 3] Srong musicianship. They all shine on their instruments. The bass is a bit higher in the mix than on previous recordings and you finally get to hear just how great this guy is. 4] Dave W's singing. They guy's pipes are as strong as ever but the excellent production brings it out all the more. he shows off his versatility on this disc. Dave W. is no one trick pony when it comes to singing. 5] Once again MM proves that psychedelia doesn't have to be wimpy.

What this Monster Magnet release doesn't have going for it: 1] The songs keep threatening to take off into 5 star territory but they never quite make it. This is no Dopes to Infinity but it gives me hope that another one of Dopes To Infinity caliber may be coming down the pike some time soon.
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on November 22, 2007
Since some disappointed with the band's evolution since God Says No (a suicidal attempt) and Monolithic Baby, Dave Wyndorf brings us a new album with some new things. The first audience was not too optimistic but before i listened to the album 20 times in 2 weeks i just can say that it's a great album. Of course it's not spine of god, superjudge or even dopes to infinity, but it has some tunes that make it superb. Wall Of fire (coolest song), Cyclone, A thousand stars, Blow Your Mind and Slap in the face are the classic MM hits and his way is in between Dopes to Infinity & Powertrip eras. And we've got new sounds in 4-way diablo, solid gold, no vacation or You're Alive...
If you like MM this is much better that GSN an MB, try it
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on October 24, 2015
I have heard from Monster Magnet many years ago and have never had a chance to give them a try on any of their full albums before, I recently bought one and it was love at the first sight. Their Lyrics are very clever and their music is beyond great. I love them.
Rodrigo Pedrolli
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on October 9, 2013
There is nothing noticeably groundbreaking about Monster Magnet's seventh album, 2007's "Four Way Diablo," as it mostly delivers the same sludgy stoner metal that you have come to expect from this band. And that, coupled with the fact that this New Jersey-based band has not posed quite a big enough case for surpassing the levels of excellence that they achieved on their 1998 watershed release, "Powertrip," will probably deter some listeners. But M.M. have most certainly created an album that all fans of re-warmed Black Sabbath sludge/doom riffs, heavy, adherent grooves, sludgy bass, oddly tuneful vocals, and borderline-trance-inducingly repetitive rhythms will instantaneously fall madly in love with.

One area where "Diablo" comes up a bit short is in a lack of outstanding tracks, with the sole possible exception being the excellent and even borderline epic instrumental, "Freeze And Pixillate," It is tinged with Latin-sounding acoustic guitar splashes, but for the most part, it is the bass that runs the show, here, and does so by providing the four-and-a-half minute-long song with an ominous bass intro, and a deep, depressive bass grumble that courses pretty much throughout.

And surely, there are other worthwhile tracks to be had, here, too, including two oh-so-Ministry-esque numbers in "Wall Of Fire" (a surprisingly up-tempo and raucous hard rocker) and the heavy, deeply-grooving "You're Alive." And elsewhere, songs like the sing-songy opening title cut, and "Slap In The Face" are two insanely hooky inclusions, and both boast moaning, groaning, bottom-heavy bass lines and cataclysmic guitar soloing. For a handful of the other more memorable moments, check out the droning, doomy, Dio-era Sabbath-reminiscent"Cyclone"; the Latin-tinged near ballad that is "2000 Light Years From Home" (a Rolling Stones cover); and "A Thousand Stars," which boasts another heavy, throbbing, muscularly grumbling bass part.

As good as these songs are, though, there is too much material, here, that simply fails to stand out and/or stick with the listener for very long after hearing it. As such, "Four Way Diablo" cannot be rendered as an "OMG, how friggin' awesome!" album, but it most certainly is a good (and very enjoyable) effort all the same.
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