Gone is Gone are another wonderful offshoot band featuring a member of Mastodon, and this is the second one which has Troy Sanders in it. Unlike Killer be Killed, though, this is a bit of a lighter project. Instead of brain crushing riffs, you get more stoner rock and classic rock type vibes on this record.
Echolocation comes less than 6 months after the release of the band’s self-titled 8 track e.p, but it doesn’t show, as there seems to be no real step down in quality, which I will admit was a concern when I saw the release of the album was coming so soon.
I have to admit I had a total blast with this album. It perfectly melds two worlds together, it features some of the most straight forward with driving rock that Mastodon has done so well on their newer releases with some of the more stripped down elements featured on newer Queens of the Stone Age material, which seems natural since members of both bands are featured here. As you may expect the album yields very few surprises, but it does have a distinct sound to it that you will spot a mile away. Take a track like “Resurge” for instance that just feels undeniable when you hear it, but then it still works in context next to tracks like “Slow Awakening” & “Fast Awakening” which feature back to back and are polar opposites but all feel like they belong together and aren’t fighting to be here.
I’d be remiss however if I didn’t mention the one cover song on here and that is a cover of “Roads” by Portishead, a seminal moment of melancholia in itself, but here is transformed into something else, the band choose not to go heavy, but they instead pay the song the proper respect and give it a haunting makeover that gives the song a fresh coat of a paint rather than a complete reinvention and it works beautifully.
If you are looking for a straightforward uncomplicated album of big riffs, complimented by tender moments of haunting astral musings, then you could do a lot worse than giving Echolocation a go.