Mantar, a new duo from Hamburg, Germany, take plenty from the groovier aspects of 90s metal, but they don’t quite feel like the bands they emulate. This lies not in the riffs, but how they’re presented. They don’t have the street vibe of Helmet or Prong, they’re not interested in a Melvinsian sense of humor, and they’re not imbued with Matt Pike’s stoned majesty. Moreover, they sure as hell know they’re not from Louisiana. Mantar have a seriousness about them, as evidenced on their debut album Death By Burning, cloaking their sounds in a darkness that make them downright vicious. They’re a band who can claim the Jesus Lizard as an influence and still hang with the rosters of staunch metalists like Iron Bonehead or Hells Headbangers.
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