Release Date: Jan 22, 2008
Record label: Jagjaguwar
Genre(s): Indie, Rock
During the nearly three years between Black Mountain's self-titled debut album and its sophomore full-length In the Future, there had been extensive touring, a first attempt at recording which proved to be a false start of sorts (though some of those songs ended up here), and a kind of development that would seem radical if these Vancouverites weren't so quirky to begin with. Certainly, the roots of this sound are evident on the debut album. It's loaded with trippy neo-psych folk and rock tropes.
There were definitely some Pink Floyd elements in the Black Mountain mix before, but the Vancouver fuds really let the Floyd flag fly on In The Future, from the Hipgnosis-inspired sleeve art to the spacey noodling through epic jams about nothing in particular. Obviously, they’ve been drinking in all the press hype since the release of their self-titled debut and decided they needed to make a grand statement that would play equally well in sports arenas and open fields of mud to a hairy horde waiting for the Flaming Lips to get onstage. They put their cloudy heads together and came up with the power-chord-slashing and hobbitty keyboard werping goods but wisely didn’t lose all the dirty distortion and strummy acoustic bits.
Review by John Motley.
Review Summary: Pitchfork sweats to the 70sAccording to Black Mountain, the future of rock music will retrogress, for their image and music is straight out of 70s psychedelic rock. Yet they open for Coldplay and Pitchfork hails their music as “Best New Music.” Why? Black Mountain are a breath of fresh air, especially coming out of Canada, an indie and post-rock hotbed hosting The Arcade Fire, Do Make Say Think, and Stars. The wild, untamed long hair, the screaming Hammond organ, and rusty guitar sounds all conjure an image much gruffer than the current music scene.Furthermore, the band starts their latest album, In The Future, with about as perfect a hook as they could.
Vancouver songman Stephen McBean and his band of retro-obsessed rockers, Black Mountain, are back with another helping of oily, wasteoid rock. In the Future is similar to the group’s 2005 self-titled debut, but in addition to the stoner shuffle and Sabbath tomfoolery, there’s a truckstop-meth- white-knuckle-roadside-terror vibe. I even hear a Uriah Heap influence in spots.
Coming down from the, er ... mountain, well, British Columbia, bandleader Stephen McBean and his cohorts sound logjammed in the past on In the Future. Not that Black Mountain doesn't deserve mad props for impersonating the best Norwegian metal band this side of Canada, equal parts hobbit rock and Sabbath lite. Nor can they be so easily dismissed.