Mammatus has been conjuring up a heavy blend of riff laden, space trippin, proggy, hazy far out rock and roll for ten years now. Since forming in the shadows of the Santa Cruz Mountains of California in 2005, they've delighted the ears and minds of adventurous listeners around the world. Their wizard and dragon themed self titled debut LP became a cult classic among the stoner rock crowd, drawing rave reviews from music lovers who were mesmerized by the psychedelic jam sandwich of Sabbathy riffage, swirling kraut grooves, and thundering space drones. In 2007 Mammatus released The Coast Explodes, and continued their ascent into heaviness while introducing more prog into the mix and creating a blissful yet intense spiritual rock experience. They traversed North America, garbing themselves in bizarre floral wizard robes and waving redwood staffs foraged from Corralitos Creek, turning people on to their sound and leaving many a sore neck behind them. There was a period of hibernation between 2008 and 2012, spattered with sporadic bursts of energy when Mammatus would appear in select locations on the west coast playing shimmering spaced out hypno prog metal. They had lost themselves in the electronic fury of the mind, writing an album about the elation and confusion that the brain experiences from being overwhelmed by music. They emerged in 2013 with Heady Mental, an album embracing the weird, a hyperpipe of sonic haze.
Now Mammatus return with their fourth album, and their most ambitious to date. Sparkling Waters is a double LP featuring four multi-movement pieces, each designed to recalibrate the shanga array in your mind. In order to achieve the highest levels of sensatory clarity, the group enlisted Phil Manley (Trans Am, Life Coach) as their guiding light throughout the studio production. As a result these tracks shimmer with a far out, casual glow, like an aural reflection of a Risan steam pool.
On Sparkling Waters, Mammatus expand upon the astral grooves and heady riffs of their previous compositions and set a course for the furthest horizon. Celestial arpeggiations of electric guitar ricochet infinitely across vast expanses of cosmic debris. Heavy riffs thunder with a rhythmic groove, like the exploding coast of Ornia spoken of in days past. Pastoral passages of mellow, slow burning psychedelia give way to native american flute melodies and the chanting of spiritual incantations filtered through canyons of delay. Heavenly dual guitar leads soar like a hawk gliding over a mountainside redwood canopy. Radiant synthesizers harmonize to create a shape shifting formation of ambient space that envelops the rock and in some places completely takes over.
Sparkling Waters is bound to appeal to a wide range of discerning listeners, as it incorporates elements of heavy riff rock, prog, and breath metal while it also features the enhancing sonic textures of kosmische sound coloration, soaring synth leads, and astral voyages through deep space. This amalgamation of tones is presented in a way that is wholly original, casting Mammatus as the solitary practitioners of a unique sound that was invented with the express purpose of making you feel.....shanga. So breathe deeply, strap on those headphones, drop the needle, and get far out.