Black Mountain – IV
Those searching for echoes of Black Mountain's thunderous 2008 release In The Future won't find it in latest record IV. This is certainly not to say that these Canadian masters of 21st century psych rock have returned with a record of lesser merit. If 2010's Wilderness Heart was their answer to Houses Of The Holy, then IV is – ahem – their Led Zeppelin IV.
Mothers Of The Sun is an emphatic opener, mounting a sublimely ominous intro before breaking out the fuzz soaked riffs and Amber Webber's delicate folk-visionary vocals. It's Black Mountain at their most cosmic, a virile eight-minute trip via spiky solos and slinky tambourine refrains.
An assured sense of spiritual maturity permeates IV – from Defector's languid 70s funk to Crucify Me's meditative acoustic flourishes, tastefully extolling Led Zep's introspective classic Tangerine. IV isn't Black Mountain's most ferocious album, but you might well find it their most profound. [Claire Francis]