Review: 311 – MOSAIC

311 – MOSAIC
311’s MOSAIC album cover is a mosaic of fan-submitted images.

311’s latest album, MOSAIC, is a patchwork of different styles, producers, and songwriters, but, at its core, it is still very much a 311 album. The quality on 311’s last album, Stereolithic, was very even; that is, the highs and lows were within a narrow range. This album is quite the opposite in that there are superlatives among both the best and the worst material. Overall, there is enough quality and variety on MOSAIC for anyone to find something to enjoy on this album. This album really is a superlative effort even though I think they missed the mark by involving John Feldmann and his production team on five songs. MOSAIC is a solid addition to 311’s discography.

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311 – “Perfect Mistake”

311 released a new song from their upcoming album, Mosaic, on Friday. It’s called “Perfect Mistake” and it’s one of the five songs produced by John Feldmann (Goldfinger, The Used, Story of the Year, Blink-182, etc.) that will be on the 17-track record.

The song has an early-2000s pop-punk/nu-metal vibe. Feldmann’s writing, production style, and overbearing influence are all over this song. It’s not a bad song, per se, but it’s overproduced, in my opinion, and it’s not a “311” song. It’s 311 performing a song constructed for them by Feldmann and his minions.

With that said, the bandmembers’ performances are excellent and the more mainstream production style might hook casual listeners.

311 – “Too Late”

The river cuts its way through stone
Not through sheer force, but persistence
At the end of the day, the relentless always win

Check out this new song by 311. It’s called “Too Late”. It’s a song from their upcoming album, Mosaic, which will be released on June 23, 2017. This song is great, in my opinion. The lyrics are thoughtful. Parts of this song may be the heaviest 311 have ever been, especially the final minute.

 

Four 311 Shows in Five Days

There’s nothing particularly superlative about seeing four 311 shows in five days. There are fans that follow bands to every tour stop. I know of one 311 fan who has been to hundreds of shows. I’ve been to a lot of shows over the years, but, for me, seeing 311 four times in five days is still noteworthy.

This opportunity came to me more via circumstance than a dedicated effort on my part. Early in 2016, 311 announced a two-show Fourth of July weekend event in Las Vegas. At that point, I wasn’t sure if 311 would add Salt Lake City as a tour stop this summer, so I went ahead and bought tickets to the Las Vegas shows when they went on sale. A few weeks later, 311 announced more summer tour dates, including two shows at The Depot—a small club-style venue in Salt Lake City—immediately before the Las Vegas show dates (with a travel day in-between). Thus, four shows in five days became a reality!

Head to the 311 section for the show setlists, or keep reading for more details.

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311 Archive

311 Archive album cover

In about a week, 311 will release their 25th anniversary 311 ARCHIVE box set. (“HIVE” is bold because that’s the name of a song, their fan club, and their recording studio.) Included in the box set are a 60-page photo book and 81 tracks, including demos, B-sides, bonus tracks, pre-production recordings and other unreleased songs. Archive covers material from 1992–2014. If you’re a fan of the band, this compilation is a must-have! Order a copy from PledgeMusic, iTunes, Amazon, et al.

311 have also been busy releasing songs from Archive via various web media outlets, including “Earth People” (from the Transistor sessions), “Grifter” (Transistor sessions), “Cali Soca” (Soundsystem sessions), and “Time is Precious” (Evolver sessions). Follow the preceding links to listen to those songs. Enjoy!