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Black Mountain – Wilderness Heart

October 27, 2010 by  

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Black Mountain – Wilderness Heart

NAME: Black Mountain
ALBUM: Wilderness Heart
DATE: 13September2010

LABEL: Jagjaguwar


FIVE WORD REVIEW: Monster Riffs – A Massive Shark

LOCATION: Seattle/Los Angeles/Vancouver

LINE UP: Stephen McBean (vox/guitar), Amber Webber (vox/percussion), Jeremy Schmidt (keyboards), Joshua Wells (drums/keys), Matthew Camirand (bass)


WHAT’S THE STORY?: Yes it’s that album with an angry shark on it and the catchy first single complete with a video of the band playing on the Lost island to a skateboarding kid who’s bagged someone twice his age. Canadian psych-rockers Stephen McBean, Amber Webber and Co. are back with their third release Wilderness Heart on Jagjaguwar.

Continuing negligence for a groundbreaking new sound, Black Mountain have stayed true to their form, crafting another album awash with the reminiscence of late sixties rock’n’roll. From the opening track, first single ‘The Hair Song’, it is made clear that the band have developed fluid chord progressions and harnessed the intimate yet beautiful clash of their two vocal leads. Second track ‘Old Fangs’ preludes to the listener the dominant theme of the album: chugging guitar riffs embellished by an electric organ and a driving bassline, a sound which emulates the works of Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin.

The album shifts in dynamics several times; firstly with the tense undertones of ‘Radiant Hearts’ and later when McBean takes us on a ride on a ‘crazy blue wave’ in ‘The Space In Your Mind’. These acoustic contrasts only feel accomplished on the final track ‘Sadie’, which assuredly resolves any preconceptions that the band cannot be equally expressive without an onslaught of nostalgic fuzz.

The selling point of Wilderness Heart is, quite simply, the riffs. The seduction of stoner hooks strummed out on ‘Rollercoaster’ and the title track is enough for any fan of rock’n’roll’s forefathers to find satisfaction in the album.

SOUNDS LIKE: Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, Grinderman

YOU’LL LIKE THIS IF: You fancy a contemporary testimonial to the glory days of late 60s/early 70s rock


Submitted By Matt Goodwin



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