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By the release of 1998's Mezzanine, critics were suddenly of the understanding that Massive Attack were one of the most important bands in the world. Bristol's original trip-hop pioneers had, on previous albums Blue Lines and Protection, fused turntable wizardry to the warmest of soul. With Mezzanine, however, the party had ended; revisiting the murky soundscapes so favoured by former partner and fellow Bristolian Tricky, the comeback single "Rising Son" muttering edgily about "cheap beer filled with crocodile tears", over the deepest bass. Tensions were heightened by the news that the making of Mezzanine was riven by inter-band rifts. The friction, though, seems to have create some gems; "Inertia Creeps" is drenched in menace, and "Teardrop" features the ethereal vocals of Liz Fraser of the Cocteau Twins--both of these a benchmark not just for the band, but for the trip-hop genre. Bleak, but powerfully beautiful. --Louis Pattison
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Top Customer Reviews
The album begins with some of the best songs ever created by any artist of any kind, starting with "Angel", sung by Massive Attack's honorary member, Horace Andy. With his wonderfully haunting voice and the song's slow beats and humming bass, the song becomes dark, desolate, and completely otherworldly.
The second song, "Risingson" is probably the best song Massive Attack has created. It's yet another dark song, filled with paranoia and doubt. I love it.
The third track, "Teardrop" is one of my personal favorites. The song is sung by guest vocalist, Elizabeth Fraser of the Cocteau Twins. It's Ethereal, dreamy, and utterly wonderful.
And, of course, there is "Inertia Creeps". A truly great song and one of Massive Attack's bests. Eerie, paranoid, and hypnotic: it's a great song to lose yourself in.
The rest of the album cannot quite keep up with its first four epic tracks, but none the less, it's other half beats out most albums without ever even trying. A truly wonderful album. I highly recommend it.
For months I couldn't get through a day without playing this album at least once or twice. Now, i come back to it, and it sounds new again. Beautifully rich and dark. The voices never seem to interfere with the mood, rather they become fused with it perfectly--the percussion and varied sounds, never the "thump-thump" of dancey trancy crap.
I cannot wait for Massive Attack's next album release. I hope they return to this level again: because it was lost a bit in 100th Window. Sinead O'Connors political content loaded lyrics on the Irish-English conflict totally overshadowed the musical gift of Massive Attack. The MOOD is enough to convey that and more to listeners without creating narrow, literal channels of interpretation and storytelling. The track Antistar on 100th was the strength being revealed, but still couldn't shine with the magic of Mezzanine. Storytelling/literal political agendas are not what Massive Attack's strength is: Stick with your strength: It's Mezzanine. It's ALL there. the MUSIC.
This is by far one of the best albums in history, in my honest opinion. No one else has come so close, so completely, on an entire album.
Whew! 'Nuff said. Bye!
Massive Attacks`s third effort is more rock-oriented than their previous ones, relying on the strenght of guitars. Still, the electronic elements play a big role as well, as the band again uses a lot of loops and samples to create and absorbing and at times claustrophobic mood. Each song is a complex and addictive moment and none of them lack distinction. This is a strong and compelling record without any filler. The opener "Angel", sung by frequent collaborator Horace Andy, starts in a smooth and subtle note to end with an amazing guitar explosion that makes for a perfect beginning to the album. Other highlights (even if it`s difficult to choose highlights here) include the gorgeous first single "Teardrop", the spooky and unsettling "Inertia Creeps", the superbly dark and nightmarish "Man Next Door" or the unusual and haunting "Group Four".
"Mezzanine" is by far Massive Attack`s best release, a multilayered and diverse record which carries an hypnotic nocturnal feel, presenting songs full of tension, mysteries and countless details. This album offers something new and unique with each listen, becoming vicious and a true must-own. It also has something for everyone, as it is difficult not to like at least one or two songs here (I think they`re all great, even the instrumental "Exchange").
One of the best records of the last decade.
Most recent customer reviews
Clearly a lot of people love this record but I just couldn't get into it. Maybe you need to be a fan of this genre, which I obviously am not. Read morePublished 4 months ago by David Koehler
Simply put a brilliant musical effort! Perfect for just sitting back and going into a deep trance on a stormy night. Or something to that extent.Published 16 months ago by C. LeGrow
New album with two scratches at the end of side 4. It was the third new album in a week that I purchased with scratches from the Back to Black catalog. So much for quality control. Read morePublished on Jan. 21 2014 by Mark Campbell
One of the best albums of the 90's. Redefine your 90's listening experience with this album. Trip hop should live on.Published on Jan. 20 2014 by Nick dizes
Do yourself a favor and find a friend with a high-end stereo or spring for one of your very own and lose yourself in this album. Read morePublished on Dec 31 2013 by J
One of Rolling Stone's Top 100 Albums of All Time, this recording is simply a game-changer, blazing (perhaps) a new path...Published on Nov. 15 2013 by doc