Released: 23rd October 2020
With zany track names, aggressive proto-punk guitar riffs and psychedelic imagery, Magick Mountain’s debut album ‘Weird Feelings’ manages to feel familiar without seeming re-done. It’s a real feat, considering the trio has been involved with or headed many a stalwart figure of the Leeds scene, such as Sky Larkin, Pulled Apart By Horses and Mother Vulpine – to name a few.
There is something about the hypnotically simple lyrics contrasting with the often old school garage-rock lack of production that feels enticingly organic. This is best seen in ‘Brown Bread’ and ‘Zodiac’, both of which are electric. The latter comes in brash with an addictive, cacophonous sound, showing just how much lead guitarist Lins Wilson has missed being front-and-centre jamming with her guitar, while the former has those effortless vocal “uh oh”s contributing to a sound that is reminiscent of a more seductive ‘Parklife’-era Blur.
The standout, however, is ‘Dream Chaser’, where Magick Mountain pause the noise and sonically transcend to a more introspective landscape. It is the trio’s emulation of ‘The Only Exception’ by Paramore on ‘Brand New Eyes’: laid back, ethereal and just that little bit haunting. ‘Colossus’ is the opposite – but all the better for it – with a forward momentum building playfully in this high-tempo, earthy track.
When Magick Mountain combine their characteristic-free spirit, bombastic sonic style, as can be seen on the last track ‘The Creeper’, they truly do make magic(k). With a slightly unsettling violin solo and a jagged ending that sounds as if the trio are being launched into space, it’s a voluptuous, refreshing finale that leaves you wanting more. This debut record sets up Magick Mountain as a band that have been born out of the Leeds scene, but have sonically reached a change of pace.