Black Mountain
In the Future


3.0
good

Review

by Tyler Fisher EMERITUS
January 26th, 2008 | 18 replies | 9,708 views


Release Date: 2008 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Pitchfork sweats to the 70s

According 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. “Stormy High” immediately introduces a bluesy, grooving guitar riff through sloppy distortion while the organ accompanies the band with high, shimmering chords. While not showing off the concept in full form, the band’s male and female vocalists weave in and out of each other’s melodic lines. “Angels” brings the energy down, demonstrating a more subtle side to the band with jagged guitar chords and more unified vocal harmonies. “Tyrants” tops everything by slamming the two sounds together in one eight-minute epic that feels at times like Zeppelin and at times like Queen. The uptempo blues sections are faster, the slower ballad sections are slower, the quieter sections go acoustic, and thus the song is a concise nugget of the band’s entire sonic spectrum.

Unfortunately, that is just the problem with the album. The opening three songs give the entire album away and everything else simply feels like a repeat of those songs. “Tyrants” clearly marks the album’s climax, and nothing comes close to matching its quality. On “Stay Free”, the band attempts an acoustic ballad, but the falsetto vocals become grating after a few minutes and the lyrics are at times ridiculous (i.e. the wailing of “oh beautiful ponies, so beautiful, they’ll kill us all”). “Evil Ways” manages to redeem the album with tribal rhythms and a catchy keyboard riff. With Black Mountain’s sound, the music works much better as fun and bouncy rather than epic and emotional. Near the tail end of the album, the band extends about six or seven minutes worth of music “Bright Lights” to over 16 minutes by continuously repeating riffs. The first four minutes have the most annoying vocals of the entire album, with both vocalists continuously repeating the title of the song. Halfway through the song, the organist plays a lengthy rubato interlude that, while well written, could have been cut in half without losing any effect. Finally, the rest of the band enters and builds to a huge climax, but after fifteen minutes of boredom, hardly anything could redeem the entire song.

In the Future demonstrates that Black Mountain is an incredibly talented band caught up in their own sound. The first three songs will undoubtedly hook any listener into continuing the album, but the listener will find nothing as impressive as that opening statement. Still, if you’re looking for a refreshing listen of 70s psychedelic rock, look no further than “Tyrants.”



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user ratings (104)
Chart.
3.7
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
plane
Staff Reviewer
January 26th 2008



6073 Comments


Yeah, pretty much. "Night Walks" is the one track I listen to after giving this a few spins, but you're spot on.

DWittisarockstar
January 26th 2008



1501 Comments


This sounds cool. I may have to check this out later. Good review.

pixiesfanyo
January 26th 2008



1223 Comments


review could be summed up with the sentence: 'black mountain is like comets on fire only not as good.'

Tyler
Emeritus
January 26th 2008



7924 Comments


This album took a surprising amount of effort to get through. Some really solid things going on but a lot of not so solid shit overshadows it. I'd still probably give it a 3 though.

skullcrusher149
January 26th 2008



560 Comments


this band WOULD come out of British Columbia. Crazy stoner neighbors I live next to...

TheGreatD17
January 26th 2008



1141 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I bumped this up from a 3 to a 3.5 in my mind after listening to this a second time. I don't mind "Bright Lights" at all, and I don't think it goes downhill necessarily after "Tyrants;" it's the best song on the album, but the second half has better tracks than "Angels."This Message Edited On 01.31.08

davEydudely
January 29th 2008



1 Comments


This is a fine album that reveals itself over time, requiring patience and an open mind. With their love in the past and an eye to the future, this is a passionate and genuinely inventive album that leaks sincerity on every level.

To those who reviewed it right out of the gate upon first listen, I would like to hear what you have to say about it a year from now.



plane
Staff Reviewer
January 29th 2008



6073 Comments


As opposed to those who reviewed it and rated it higher?

FlawedPerfection
Emeritus
January 29th 2008



2806 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

To those who reviewed it right out of the gate upon first listen, I would like to hear what you have to say about it a year from now.


Been listening to it for about a month and a half so.This Message Edited On 01.29.08

moltenlava
July 3rd 2008



312 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This album is great. But, I don't know if it matches the charm of the debut though. I might need a double dose of THC to find out. Best experienced whilst green.



heylelshalem
November 16th 2008



71 Comments


this album is definately not perfect..but i think that its good qualitys shine through..but i AM a big fan of classic seventies rock so perhaps my bias is showing here lol..

endlessartix
June 19th 2009



275 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is great...

CrazyFool84
August 15th 2009



1078 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

this band is pretty gnarly, liked the disc after the first spin, but upon repeated listens it lacks the punch of the first album quite a bit. There are still a small chunk of good songs on there, but this is a bit of a downer in terms of what I was expecting

mysticrecords
December 11th 2009



29 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

this is fantastic from start to finish. and bright lights is an amazing song. 5/5

demigod!
April 27th 2011



40970 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I fucking love this album, every song is so good. I love the progressive, psychedelic and 70's metal influences. so good

Tyrants slays so hard, listen to it now if youve never heard this

LordHamLeg
May 29th 2012



26 Comments


As the reviewer states, the first few tracks are really refreshing and well-written. Then, it falls into the bland "indie" area the last 2/3rds of the album.

demigod!
December 13th 2012



40970 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

album rules

Tyrants is amazing

demigod!
May 2nd 2013



40970 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

ohhh stay freeeee



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