Album Review: Iron Monkey – Spleen & Goad

Album Review: Iron Monkey - Spleen & Goad
Reviewed by Daniel Phipps

Following the return of the legendary Nottingham sludge band back in 2017, Iron Monkey are once again back to provide a new record. With a lineup change since the 9-13 record which sees the return of Dean Berry who was a member of the band when they recorded the masterpiece Our Problem along with drummer Z Big who both join original member Jim Rushby on this new collection of material Spleen & Goad.

Initially you can hear a huge difference between Spleen & Goad and its predecessor 9-13. Where 9-13 I thought had a more punky vibe and tempo, Spleen & Goad is definitely more in the vein of the classic Iron Monkey sound as the record’s very suitably titled opening track Misanthropizer opens with a barrage of slow and downright ugly sounding riffs, and even uglier vocals, which sets up the record to continue its path of doom filled destruction. As the record runs you can pick out riffs and sections of tracks which do strike resemblance to the first 2 records and as much as I enjoyed the 9-13 record I think that Spleen and Goad has a more defined Iron Monkey sound to it.

Album Review: Iron Monkey - Spleen & Goad

Now there is no way you are ever going to replicate John Paul Morrow and his absolutely ungodly vocal range especially considering it's one of the things that really drew me to the band, unfortunately this was after his tragic passing. With this being said any other vocal style on an Iron Monkey record would not work and the vocals on this release keep that style and they sound really solid. The overall sound on this release is absolutely brilliant. It's straight up power as each riff sounds absolutely savage and the power of the drums really gives those riffs such a boost to them.

Spleen & Goad is a solid slab of ugly nihilism put to music. Iron Monkey showcases a fantastic collection of tracks, which belong side by side with the rest of the discography and do the bands and legacy a service. This will be a record I'm looking back on towards the end of the year and still enjoying the same as how I go back to the debut and Our Problem with such enjoyment now.

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