[sic] Magazine

Mt. Mountain – Cosmos Terros

The Cardinal Fuzz label doesn’t just go deep when they dig a band; they go obsessive. Having already re-released the quite wonderful solo record from Perth, Australia band Mt. Mountain’s frontman Stephen Bailey earlier this year, they’re now pushing out a repress of the band’s 2016 strong debut, Cosmos Terros, ahead of unleashing the varied psych-stoner outfit’s third, Golden Rise, in November as well. This is on top of issuing their atmospheric sophomore album last year and reissuing the two debut EPs too remember! Brush aside the fan-boy stuff though and, time and again, it’s easy to see why the label has so much time for the band.

From OMED through to Dust, Mt. Mountain have repeatedly tabled psychedelic desert-rock with a difference for “out-there” for these guys means the outback, a sun-blasted moonscape of truly Martian proportions. Tremulous psych-rock mirages are consequently conjured during the passing of infinite dust-storms so powerful as to shape the terrain, ever-intensifying riffs leading to bouts of space-prog brilliance, white-hot wah and 60s organ melting into gentle hand-drums, prop-drone and Bailey’s hypnotic vocals.

Cosmos Terros’s six tracks weight in a nearly 40 minutes and they fit seamlessly into the impressive catalogue. Pitting psychedelically tinged stoner-rock against aggressive fuzz, the very heavy footfall of the opener, “Seek The Sun”, lands like falling tombstones in the desert dust. Hailing from another time entirely, a post-punk grumble of guitar and drums then bubbles beneath Bailey’s intangible vocal and the kosmische zoning of “Diablo”. In turn, “Freida” comes aboard with disorientating effects and a slo-mo groove, the good ship Cosmos Terros sailing on into dark waters filled with mythological spectres, the Kraken inevitably waking to crash thunder down on all around.

A juggernaut soundtrack for The Doof to crank out on any new Mad Max movie, a dangerously buzzed-out rhythm is later slashed into confetti by sharp guitar parts on “Elevation”, the drums an unstoppable mass of fists and fury. Taking down the tempo, the heavy mid-paced banger “Moon Desire” chooses to loads its gun instead with Psychic Ills’ brand of fuzz-psych, wailing guitar echoes proving a wild sting in the tail. A meditative start to the dreamy closer, “Pass On”, ultimately belies its kaleidoscopic haze and outright charge to an impassioned climax fill of righteous soling and liquid riffs. Whether new to the party or calling in once more on old friends, consider the appetite duly whetted for Golden Rise.

Best track: “Moon Desire”

~Cosmos Terros is re-released on vinyl in a 320gsm gloss-laminated sleeve with insert and download code September 29th via Cardinal Fuzz.~