The Mushroom River Band

Picture of The Mushroom River Band

Music For The World Beyond

The Mushroom River Band - Music For The World Beyond ©2000 MeteorCity
1. To The World Beyond
2. Mud-crusher
3. Racing
4. Way To Go
5. 29'2 1/2" (Into Thin Air)
6. The Mushroom River
7. More Beer (Pelekas Part I)
8. Addicted
9. Sir B's Tune
10. A Sad Story
11. Nurse
12. Free

If you were to browse the shelves of your very favorite CD store, there's a good chance that The Mushroom River Band would not jump out at you for any particular reason. Perhaps if you know that former Spiritual Beggars vocalist Spice was in The Mushroom River Band, you'd know to pause at this brown, dull cover. However, if you knew nothing of that connection, you may very well just pass on to the next CD on the shelf.

Music For the World Beyond is a very lively, groove-laden heavy rock album, but it is cursed with some quite unappealing and unattractive artwork. It's not the type of thing that would lure the eye over and beg for attention. However, the music itself is quite good: a mix of low-tuned dirty guitars, lively, energetic tempos and grooves that most "stoner" rock bands only can hope to covet. Naturally, those familiar with Spiritual Beggars will immediately notice the similarities, most obviously the vocals. But considering Spice was in both bands at the time of the CD's release, this is about as surprising as snow in Aspen in January. The Mushroom River Band does come across as a dirtier style of heavy rock, as though the band felt the need to walk through a marsh right before entering the studio. The guitars are dense and heavier than any girl you might pick up at a beginning Weight Watcher's class. Hints of 70s rock show up in organs and the required Black Sabbath influence. The melodies are slightly obscured, but still fairly powerful throughout, as Spice is a fairly capable frontman for this style of music.

Although The Mushroom River Band doesn't add an entirely new flavor to a familiar genre, they do a more than fine job of it. The songwriting is sharp and snappy and the performance is spot on. Fans of heavy rock or Spiritual Beggars are hereby advised to ignore the bland cover and dig right in.

Review by John Chedsey

Review date: 01/2003

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