There's a lot to explore in the way that Mountains use synthetic sounds to make organic music. Nature in general, as broad as that may seem, is a huge factor. In past releases, they've incorporated burbling streams, and often there's a low drone that sounds so vast it feels as beautiful and daunting as staring at the hugest tree. It's an interesting way to approach this sort of music—aiming for pure feeling in the most abstract sense, and nailing it just about every time. The video for "Living Lens," which finds Mountains at their best, manipulating subtle textures in gorgeous ways—is just a closeup of a fire, with bits of it streaking against a background so black it's hard to believe it could be the actual sky. Centralia is out January 22nd on Thrill Jockey, just in time to brave the elements and go all My Side of the Mountain with nothing but what's on your back (and also maybe an iPod with this Mountains album on it).
January 11, 2013