If you remember the glory days of Man’s Ruin and MeteorCity, this album might be right up your alley. Mr. Plow started playing heavy riffs back in ’97, and released four indie recordings in 2000, ’04 and ’06 before calling it a day. Toronto scenesters might even know that voice—their singer made a brief appearance on Electric Magma’s Canadian Samurai II.
Their comeback effort features no fewer than 12 tracks clocking in just shy of 58 minutes. “Sigil” starts things off with a heavy stoner groove straight from the 90’s, with a vocal that falls somewhere between John Garcia and the dude from Ugly Kid Joe. “Samizdat” is a little more mellow, with a pretty decent desert rock riff leading into a catchy, fuzzy chorus, tossing in a few heavy breakdowns past the four-minute mark. “Shaolin Cowboy” picks up the pace a tad, a crunchy, groovy number with a chant-along chorus. Nothing wrong with that.
“Matchstick” is another slow, heavy roller, although it’s a tad lengthy at almost seven minutes, and the verses lack energy. Fortunately, most of the rest of these songs are around four minutes long. Heavy grooves abound on tunes like “Memento,” “Johnny Gentle,” and the laid-back, head-nodding title track. But they could cut 15-20 minutes off this record, and I wouldn’t miss ‘em. I’m also disappointed that “Hammer Smashed Face” isn’t a Cannibal Corpse cover.