Black Mountain – “IV”

I love getting new music. The internet has opened up a world of music to all of us and the online marketplaces have made it so that you can buy pretty much just about anything you want, whether that be from bands directly, labels, retailers, or auctions. If you’re willing to pay the price, most releases can make their way straight to your mailbox without you ever having to get up out of a chair.

But for all of that, I’d still rather go to the record store. It’s the anticipation, the random find, the discovery of something you never thought to look for before. There’s nothing that can beat it… though there is one thing that comes close – getting an unexpected package in the mail from a friend who knows what you like. I wasn’t surprised to see a record mailer in my mailbox the other day, as it seems like I’ve always got something on order from somewhere; but I was surprised when I saw the return address was that of my buddy Andy. Yes! Mystery records!

One of the two albums Andy sent was Black Mountain’s new release IV, and holy hell this is a great rocker. Elements of psych and stoner rock combine to generate a surprisingly rich musical tapestry for Amber Webber’s vocals to weave through, whether she’s taking the lead or using her voice like a backing instrument as she does in “You Can Dream.” There’s a ton of great music here, but if I’m picking favorites I’ve got to go with “Defector,” with Santana-esque guitar elements, a liberal use of keyboards, and smooth groovy vocals. Honorable mention to “Mothers of the Sun” – the guitar intro is kick-ass and Webber’s voice is outstanding.

I’m not sure how much longer it’ll be available, but the review of IV posted by NPR includes streaming of the songs, so take advantage and give it a listen.

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