Mt. Mountain is not a new band, although it is for me. With Centre the band released its fourth album. The band opens with a 7 minute plus outing, 'Tassel'. For a few moments the band fools me into believing I'm listening to the new Maxïmo Park, reviewed two days ago on this blog, but soon a more psychedelic sound sets in and the band starts to work on a giant, hypnotic musical piece of art. Repetition is the word here. The drum pattern, the long held synth notes, the repetitive guitar part, it all brings the listener slowly but surely in a trance. The opening song competes with the best of them. For me that is The Black Angels. 'Tassel' just grows and grows and is a statement of an opening song.
Singer Stephen Bailey nearly drowns in the music around him. This to me sounds intentional. Let's face it, he does not have a great singing voice, like more singers in a psychedelic band don't. He has that kind of voice that becomes a part of the trip. In 'Tassel' his monotonous singing simply fits. It's not conceivable to hear another kind of voice here.
Does it remain this good? That's almost impossible and does not. The record continues with a nice, muted opening riff on the guitar. Again a repetition and long held notes on the keys. 'Hands Together' adds a little mystery to Centre. The song is spacious and definitely another trip to go on. Let yourself go and the song will move you to a higher level of consciousness for sure. I can feel how it hovers in my mind. Next step is to listen to the song on a good stereo with the headphones on and eyes fully closed. I already relish the idea that is bound to happen soon.
On 'Hands Together' the rock element in Mt. Mountain's music has already left the studio. The drive of the song certainly is there and live this can be played at ear-splitting levels, it's not what this song is about. It is about that groove that goes on and on that does something to the brain.
This is the strength of Centre I start noticing. This is not an album for all times of the day. No, it's for those moments when the listener can surrender to the music Centre plays. Allow time and allow attention and this music will come to you at different levels. Only then it has a full effect and believe me I noticed the difference fully.
So is this the rest of the album not as good as 'Tassel'? That fully depends on the circumstances. 'Tassel" can get you in a mood that opens the mind and let the album roam free there. And these ballads I wrote about in the intro become spacious musical adventures to undergo with a peaceful mind. Centre has two faces in the ear of this listener.
* It turns out there was a previous Perth band I wrote on, Pond, in 2013. All psychedelic albums It's safe to talk of a Perth scene, I guess.
You can listen to and order Centre here:
or listen to our Spotify Playlist to find out what we are writing about: