ALBUM REVIEW: Black Mountain Wilderness Heart

The words “psychedelic rock” can be an easy turnoff for some, especially those who have no truck with hair-wagging peddle-hopping stoner-rock. However this is something entirely different. The heavy-riffing Canadian psychedelic outfit known as Black Mountain has been causing quite a stir with their latest release Wilderness Heart, which feels like listening to an immaculately-preserved mix tape of late 60s/early 70s psychedelic rock you found in your hippie uncle’s basement. The album starts it off strong with the Zep-tastic “Hair Song.” Its very Americana chord progression makes me want to sip Coca-Cola on the sidewalk outside a corner store while twirling my chain wallet. Switching gears the album throws us deep into the heavy organ and pounding electric guitar of the Deep Purple-esque “Old Fangs.” On top of these the album explores many different sounds and genres, all featuring the eerie duets of front man Stephen MacBean and Amber Webber. At times the album takes a dip towards a softer acoustic sound, with songs like “Radiant Hearts” and the last song on the album “Sadie.” While I was surprised to enjoy almost every track on the album, the highlight for me was “The Way To Gone,” an acoustic and electric medley. It winds its way through a wasteland of distorted whiny vocals with acoustic guitar and electric guitar floating in the background, working its way towards a final organ-smeared jam to the end. Although the American in me says that this Canadian album should be total crap, I can’t help but love the sounds coming through my headphones. This album is well worth the listen, especially if you feel like discovering 10 “lost” psychedelic rock tunes from the “60s and 70s”. — PELLE GUNTHER

Black Mountain plays the Theatre of Living Arts with Black Angels Sat, Nov 6 9:00 PM


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