Monster Magnet (1989-present): a Grunge band from New Jersey, USA.
ounded by David Wyndorf (vocals/guitar), John McBain (guitar), Joe Calandra (bass) and John Kleinman (drums), Monster Magnet released their eponymous debut in 1991, with Hawkwind, MC5, Black Sabbath and Iron Butterfly as obvious influences. They experimented with classic rock of the psychedelic era, but mixed it with a '90s edge, becoming one of the few true 'grunge' bands. Tab (1991), their sophomore effort, was much of the same sort but with less notoriety.
Spine of God (1992) was a break-through of sorts of this band, permanently etching their sound into the "drug rock" style. Just to make sure you didn't miss the point of their intent, the legendary cover art depicted the caption 'it's a satanic drug thing... you wouldn't understand'. Again, the album centered on the late '60s psychedelic sound and culture, mostly due to Wyndorf's obsession of that era.
After touring with Soundgarden, they replaced the departing McBain with Ed Mundell. They would also land a spot with 'A&M' for the release Superjudge (1993). Superjudge was a heavy-duty recording featuring a cover track of Hawkwind's Brainstorm, as well as strong new material like Cyclops Revolution and Elephant Bell. Dopes To Infinity (1995), however, launched them huge onto the world stage with plenty of radio play. Its psychedelic titles like Megasonic Teenage Warhead, Dopes To Infinity, Look To The Orb For The Warning and Ego, The Living Plant, coupled with odd lyrics, ensured their roots weren't far behind.
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Powertrip (1998) received some press coverage but it wasn't their ticket, only making 65 UK (97 US). So Wyndorf could concentrate on vocals, the string section was updated to add the dedicated Phil Caivano (guitar) joining for God Says No (2001). In 2003 there was a change of membership in the rhythm section with Calandra and Kleiman departing, with Jim Baglino (bass) and Michael Wildwood (drums) replacing them. But Monolithic Baby (2004) would see the rhythm section changed again, now featuring Jim Baglino (bass) and Bob Pantella (drums).
4-Way Diablo (2007) would follow. Mastermind (2010) saw the guitars changed with Philip Caivano and Ed Mundell. For Last Patrol (2013) the guitars had shifted again to offer the membership of Dave Wyndorf (guitar/keyboards/vocals), Philip Caivano (bass/guitar), Bob Pantella (percussion/drums) and Garrett Sweeny (guitar/sitar). Mindfucker (2018) would follow.
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