From the snowy climbs of Hamilton, Ontario roars the Monster Truck. I first heard this band via the fine folks over at 107.5 Dave FM. When they started playing “Righteous Smoke” in rotation, I knew I had to check out Monster Truck. Uncle Meat has questioned my liking of this band, however. He compared them to Nickelback and implied it was hypocritical of me to like one band and hate the other.
I don’t equate the two bands, although I admit similarities exist. Monster Truck appear to be more rooted in classic 70’s hard rock, where Nickelback have always sounded to me like a watered down version of all the bands of the 1990’s. (We called them “TheoryofaNickelCreed” back in the Record Store days.) Monster Truck are sweaty rock. The presence of the organ on The Brown EP sounds more like Uriah Heep than Chad Kroeger.
With that out of the way, The Brown EP is an enjoyable 15 minutes(!) of hard Canadian rock. I think Monster Truck are at their best whilst rocking out, so my least favourite track on the EP is “Seven Sea Blues”. It has become a bit of a hit single, so I might be alone on that one. Meanwhile, “Righteous Smoke” rocks solidly to the head and gets it banging. It has a solid groove and it sticks to the brain like peanut butter. “I Am Freedom” has a similar vibe, and the keys backing the riff help Monster Truck achieve their own slant on this sound.
“Love Attack” almost sounds like a classic Alice Cooper track at first, but it’s a shorty at just 1:42. “Sworded Beest” is awesome. I’ve always dug bands that had multiple lead singers, and this song has two: lead vocalist/bassist Jon Harvey, and guitarist Jeremy Widerman. Their vocals work well together, kinda like a Billy Gibbons/Dusty Hill deal. “Sworded Beest” rocks like a juggernaut but goes full-on heavy metal at the end.
My only real beef with the EP are the drums. Yes, they are hard, heavy and loud in the mix — all good things to me. But they sound a little dead, and I crave a snare sound that sounds more like a snare, and cymbols that don’t just sizzle all the time.
Not a bad EP. I’d like to get their album Furiosity next, because the single “Sweet Mountain River” from that disc is my favourite so far.