Under Review

  Pink Mountaintops

Axis of Evol (Scratch/Jagjaguwar)

Review By Julie Colero


Steve McBean has been in so many bands (some of which you know if you’re lucky, one of which you’ll know if you’re conscious), and his songwriting abilities seem to be near-peak at present. The Black Mountain frontman must just fucking DREAM music, as he’s coming up with great new records while the rest of us are tying our shoelaces. Pink Mountaintops started as a solo project and fleshed itself out into jam-band proportions when asked to perform the rollicking blues-rock sex boogies contained in the first, self-titled album.

McBean pulled back from the pack again last summer to four-track some new songs, concerning himself more with the spiritual than earthly loving this time around. It appears that some of Black Mountain band-mate and country-twinged Blood Meridian frontman Matt Camirand’s “Jesus and the Devil”-ing has rubbed off on McBean, as there’s a whole lotta Lord on this album. It fits, especially with the political admonishments of a frustrated pacifist (there’s a lot of Bush-hatin’ going on here—pretty different from the first record, eh?), and the minimal but fuzzed-out druggy bits.
If you were into the dirty feel of the first Mountaintops’ record, you’ll be pleased to hear that this one is sonically quite similar. The focus of the songs may have shifted, but the sound remains true to form. You could listen to this in a dark and dank basement or on a park bench on the sunniest of days, and still find something that makes you feel just right. Mr. Mountaintops has the gift of knowing exactly how to stroke you…