Music Reviews
Pink Mountaintops

Pink Mountaintops

Outside Love

Jagjaguwar

More and more, I find myself enjoying Black Mountain side projects more than the music emanating from the mother ship. Lightning Dust is a bewitching mix of dusty folk, Kate Bush madness and cheapo Casio wizardry while the more established Pink Mountaintops is a grandiose mix of Phil Spector lushness and choral wonder. With Outside Love, Mountaintops’ main man Stephen McBean – pictured on the back sleeve, poised on the edge of an armchair in a natty sweater and unruly hair, natch – has fused his usual love for star-crossed chamber pop balladry with a flair for the dramatic, thrift store Xmas records (check out the sleigh bells and overblown orchestrations), and Danielle Steel novels (though not nearly as obnoxious as the genuine article). Everything is bigger than life and louder than love on this album. The drums sound gigantic, the strings bypass the bother of tugging at heartstrings, seeming to be made of them instead, the keyboards and guitars are all composed of minor chords and grand gestures, McBean’s careful, raspy vocals are constantly followed by tuneful female backing vocals, choruses are packed with eminently tuneful lalalalas, and the whole thing is drowned in swells and crashes of reverb. The whole album shimmers magnificently, like a strange jewel.

At times the Moutaintops get too caught up in the gag, like when Andy Kaufman would send otherwise sympathetic audiences into homicidal rages. So yeah, occasionally it’s a little too big and too clever and syrupy.

Recommended for devotees of Phil Spector, George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass, the Walker Brothers, the Raveonettes’ recent Xmas Ep, and Spiritualized.

Jagjaguwar: http://www.jagjaguwar.com


Recently on Ink 19...

What This Comedian Said Will Shock You

What This Comedian Said Will Shock You

Print Reviews

With his latest book, What This Comedian Said Will Shock You, celebrated stand-up Jedi Bill Maher “shocks” readers by doing the most outrageous, unthinkable, and socially unacceptable thing imaginable: he speaks rationally, logically, and objectively.

Gasoline Lollipops

Gasoline Lollipops

Features

Gasoline Lollipops’ newest single, “Freedom Don’t Come Easy,” is today’s mother lovin’ punk rock folk anthem.

Basket Case

Basket Case

Screen Reviews

Frank Henenlotter’s gory grindhouse classic Basket Case looks as grimy as the streets of Times Square, and that is one of the film’s greatest assets. Arrow Video gives this unlikely candidate a welcome fresh release.

Jimmy Failla

Jimmy Failla

Event Reviews

Despite the Mother’s Day factor, hundreds of fervent, faithful followers still flocked to Orlando’s famed Plaza Live to catch an earlybird set from Jimmy Failla — one of the hottest names on today’s national comedy scene.

Lonnie Walker

Lonnie Walker

Features

Ink 19 readers get an early listen and look at “Cool Sparkling Water,” a new single from Lonnie Walker.

Los Lobos

Los Lobos

Event Reviews

Jeremy Glazier has a bucket list day at a Los Lobos 50th Anniversary show in Davenport, Iowa.

Always… Patsy Cline

Always… Patsy Cline

Archikulture Digest

Carl F. Gauze reviews the not-quite one-woman show, Always… Patsy Cline, based on the true story of Cline’s friendship with Louise Seger, who met the star in l961 and corresponded with Cline until her death.