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BLACK MOUNTAIN Wilderness Heart (2010)

Black Mountain

Wilderness Heart is the third album from Vancouver rockers Black Mountain.

Having debuted in 2005 with a self titled and self produced classic rock set, and followed it up with the 2008 In The Future album, with their third outing the band decided to take a turn at the crossroads, head to California and bring in external producers D Sarty (Nine Inch Nails, LCD Soundsystem) and Randall Dunn to add an element of challenge.

The result - Wilderness Heart - is a wonderfully heady brew of loose 1970's rock that smoulders and burns in equal measure.

With band leader Stephen McBean sharing lead vocals with Amber Webber it's a magnificently cohesive set that in turn nods to Zeppelin (The Hair Song), Deep Purple meet REM (Old Fangs, and if I hear a better Hammond organ sound this decade I'll be a happy man), early Gabriel era Genesis (Radiant Hearts), Sabbath (Let The Spirits Ride), Floyd (The Space Of Your Mind), and Hunky Dory era Bowie (Buried By The Blues and Sadie).

It would be easy to dismiss Black Mountain as derivative copyists, but the strength of the song writing, the emotive delivery and the marvellously loose feel of the set all add up to a vibe seldom experienced since those heady days of the 1970s. Certainly not in these ProTool dominated days.

Wilderness Heart is [classic] rock as rock was meant to be - earthy, organic and orgasmic.


Review by Pete Whalley

GRTR! Recommended


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***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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