Favorite psych-and-prog-spiritual pioneers BLACK MOUNTAIN are back with “In The Future”, their second full-length album that resonates with the same epic ring, beloved deep rock touchstones and genuine folk fragility that made their self-titled debut full-length an instant classic. The new album possesses immense breadth, seamlessly showcasing short and classic folk-pop gems along with driving modern rock masterpieces, peaking with “Bright Lights”, a seventeen-minute multi-dimensional opus that gives Pink Floyd’s “Echoes” a run for its money.
The new album also demonstrates a compelling evolution. Black Mountain’s first self-titled album was like being in sixth grade, when there’s a few new kids in class who you know you’re supposed to hang with. You’re out of the gates, but you still stumble and shake when the teachers yell at you. “In The Future”, ninth grade and summer vacation are over. You’re heading back to high school to hang in the hallways with those same kids who now have wispy and dirty moustaches, long hair and breasts. The teachers don’t scare you. The jocks are boring, and your record collection is more important than the prettiest girl at school. It’s the first real taste of independence in the quest for absolute freedom.
Black Mountain is Matt Camirand, Stephen McBean, Jeremy Schmidt, Amber Webber and Joshua Wells. The band hails from Vancouver, British Columbia, and have been making music together since 2004, and before that as Jerk With A Bomb. Their debut album garnered an impressive amount of critical acclaim, including Pitchfork’s prestigious “Best New Music” tag, as well as being deemed by Uncut magazine as the 4th best album of 2005. The band has toured the world, playing the smallest of rock clubs and the largest of outdoor amphitheaters. And the broad appeal of their musical work is unique, in that even though they are championed by the more underground-minded record-collector type of music fan as well as by high-profile musicians such as Wayne Coyne of the Flaming Lips, Black Mountain’s live performances and recordings also retain a very universal appeal, sticking readily to the ribs of most any garden-variety music fan. Perhaps Black Mountain strive to make music that is uncompromising but inclusive.
“In The Future”, mostly produced by Black Mountain, was recorded at three different studios, and all but one song was mixed by John Congleton, known for his work with Explosions in the Sky, Modest Mouse, R. Kelly, the Polyphonic Spree and Erykah Badu, amongst others. “Stay Free” — borrowed previously for inclusion on the Spiderman III soundtrack — was recorded, mixed and produced by Dave Sardy, who has done work with the Rolling Stones, Wolfmother, Oasis and LCD Soundsystem.