By Andrew Hunter
Pink Mountaintops newest album, Get Back, sounds like it is made for a nostalgic road trip through rock, a long drive contemplating life and all the choices that you have to make- you can imagine driving franticly down a highway as opening song “Ambulance City” plays. Vocalist Stephen McBean, also of Canadian band Black Mountain, gives this Pink Mountaintops record a more personal touch lyrically, I think that’s why “Through All The Worry” is one of my favourites from the album, but it’s tough to choose. I think I find a new fav every time I listen, “Through All The Worry” with is distorted solo and bygone lyrics “and I could understand how you’d rather split than take my hand” sees McBean harking back to his teenage life. “The second summer of love” with its Clash -London Calling-esqe guitars stands out too, looking back at the past with nostalgia and nodding to influences on this record.
The album has a very unique feel to drawing on many instruments and collaborators, (I’ll get to that later) with a mix of piano, organ, synth and sax bring more life to this record. “Wheels” has hints of The Smiths or Morrissey in the vocals in parts, searching for something “but there’s still no answers”.
Get Back is produced by Joe Cardamone (Icarus Line) and features him on vocals & keyboards too. Other guests include J Mascis (Dinosaur Jr) shredding some lead guitar on the album and also Annie Hardy (Giant Drag) lending some vocals. Annie Hardy singing/rapping on “North Hollywood Microwaves” may polarize some people, near the end she starts rapping about cocks, jizz, fucking a bear and Rod Stewart getting his stomach pumped, all over a saxophone solo, the song is quite surreal, but adds something really different to the album. I think it’s a really solid album though, with some more personal lyrics on songs like “Sixteen” McBean singing “ all we want tonight is to fall in love ’neath the midnight sky”. The second half of the album seems just a bit more loved up to me, “Shakedown” feels like it could be from a Replacements album with it’s dreamy guitars and catchy lyrics it picks up even more with a rare guitar solo in there, before the album plays out on the spiralling piano on final track “The Last Dance”. The album feels like a journey through McBean’s record collection and personal life and how quickly time/life can pass, it’s well worth a listen.
Pink Mountaintops-Ambulance City
Pink Mountaintops-North Hollywood Microwaves
Cardiff The Moon Club Thursday August 28th
Manchester The Roadhouse August 30th
Glasgow Broadcast Sunday August 31st