Thursday, January 5, 2012
Mountain Cult - Self released EP
The trouble with the never ending onslaught of great singles out there is that it's easy to get behind on posts and end up missing the release party of this single from Mountain Cult that happened right before the holidays at Pianos, which after hearing the first track on the A-Side, I'm regretting already.
This sludgy, buried under reverb, raw feel has elements of The Sentiment Club or the German Measles re-imagined no-wave sound with a classic Stooges stripped down garage, dirty soul. Maybe it's the growly bass fuzz on "Christmas Day" over the low end squeal of Ben's guitar work, along with his lackadaisical whispery delivery...in the abstract way where the vocals are secondary to the overall sound. I tried to listen for some kind of holiday lyric like a maniac.
They've decided to find a ballsy, earthquake riff for "2pm special", becoming all about the sustained distortion ringing out between slow chords, slightly out of time with each other...it's the best thing to hear, when the core of the track is this decisive. They're just completely focused on pure, distilled, sludgy stoner jams right before things historically went punk and then faster and faster.
"Mailman" the third track on this side (!) starts to pick up with a melody, and the heavy echo on Ben's vocal along with the heavy delay on everything is almost getting into a JAMC type of layered distortion...it definitely doesn't sound like this was recorded on an old 4-track. There's just the right amount of sloppiness here, like Los Llamaradas, there's a core of authenticity in going for this sincere reworking of those sounds and they're nailing it. Like Earth, getting as slow as possible, and then adding the punk anarchy...really, it's exactly like what I like about the Stooges, only mellow. I don't think Ben's going to be smearing peanut butter on himself. Does it need to be that uncomfortable anymore? Does music need that kind of masochistic performance art? Anyway, who knows, it could have been a messed up release party...
The B-Side opens with "Dog Specimen", I'm getting the sense that they all know their parts, they've all rehearsed them, but they don't necessarily have to come together exactly, and that's why I love what they're going for, it's almost the approximation of a song, nearly conceptual in that way. Here's all the pieces, you get the idea, we're going to slow this way down, and keep it simple...the spirit is all there and I'm glad to hear they're taking it to it's logical extreme, like the last track, "Friends" which could be The Mekons and Dirty Beaches collaborating on quaaludes.
Go check this out on their bandcamp page, then go make these guys rich and pony up $4 bucks.