311’s new album “Mosaic” was officially released today (Friday June 23, 2017) and as a long time 311 fan I am very impressed. The album has been one of 311’s most anticipated albums in recent years. Mosaic is 311’s twelfth studio album.
311, the band from Omaha, Nebraska, has been growing one of the most loyal base of grassroots fans since the late 1980’s. Like many other 311 fans my age, I was introduced to 311 when their hit single “Down” hit MTV in 1995. Since then 311 has been my favorite band and I’ve seen them live in several cities including Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., and Jersey City.
Like most bands that have enjoyed over 20 years of success, there is always the debate on what the best albums were and the new releases are always being compared to the ‘old school’ records.
The past several albums have really been the ‘new era’ of 311. Anyone can recognize a band changes quite a bit from their 20’s to their 40’s, but Mosaic really seems to be a great culmination of their entire sphere of songwriting. There is certainly a feeling of perfect unity between old school and new school and the title “Mosaic” is very fitting.
A few months ago 311 sailed out for their fifth ‘311 Cruise’ and teased the crowd (and those tuning in live via Facebook Live) with songs from Mosaic. There was instant fascination with how awesome the songs were and how well they were received, especially with the heavy hitting “Too Late.”
Quick Takes on 311 Mosaic
Kudos to 311 for once again recognizing their incredible fan base. The cover art of “Mosaic” is comprised of roughly 10,000 fan photos!
Overall the album provides us with a wide range of 311 characteristics. The album definitely has a lot of their Caribbean / Jamaican flavor. “Perfect Mistake” is groovy and catchy and definitely takes us somewhere new with S.A’s singing. More of the old school, heavier rap/rock is present in this album (something that has lacked for years). P-Nut’s bass lines are still amazing and it looks like fans will be able to enjoy a lot of dueling guitar moments between Tim Mahoney and Nick Hexum at live shows. The album certainly continues the trend of maturation songs as exemplified on the track “Places That The Mind Goes”, but we’re also given tracks like “Face In The Wind” that have a 1995/1996 311/Transistor era feel.
One of the underlying grievances / concerns that has been present in fan groups such as the 311 Familia group on Facebook has been the lack of S.A. dominated songs. This was a concern coming into release day and while there isn’t the level of presence of S.A. singing that existed in the 90’s he certainly isn’t an afterthought.
Your Thoughts on 311 Mosaic?
What are your thoughts? Are you happy with 311’s Mosaic? Where do you think it ranks?
Leave your comments below!
311 Album Discography
- Dammit – 1990 (independent)
- Unity – 1991 (independent)
- Music – 1993 (studio)
- Grassroots – 1994 (studio)
- 311 Day, Live in New Orleans – 1994 (video album)
- 311 – 1995 (studio)
- Enlarged to Show Detail – 1996 (video album)
- Transistor – 1997 (studio)
- LIVE – 1998 (live album)
- Omaha Sessions – 1998 (compilation album)
- Soundsystem – 1999 (studio)
- From Chaos – 2001 (studio)
- Enlarged to Show Detail 2 – 2001 (video album)
- Evolver – 2003 (studio)
- Greatest Hits – 2004 (compilation album)
- Don’t Tread On Me – 2005 (studio)
- The Road to 311 Day 2008 – 2008 (video album)
- Uplifter – 2009 (studio)
- Universal Pulse – 2011 (studio)
- Stereolithic – 2014 (studio)
- 311 with the Unity Orchestra – 2014 (live album)
- 311 Archive – 2015 (compilation album)
- The Essential 311 – 2016 (compilation album)
- Mosaic – 2017 (studio)