Wednesday, February 16, 2005

After the whole psyche-folk thing blew up last year, there seems to be a full-on classic rock revival thing brewing in indie-rock this year. (Can I talk about The Woods yet? No?) I'm not even sure if "classic rock" is the right term - I'll leave the nomenclature thing to someone else, but something is definitely going on here. Last year there were the Comets on Fire and Dungen albums, neither of which I was all that into. But this year we've got Black Mountain, who easily lap both of those bands by excising most of the noise-freakout pyrotechnics and aiming for evil sexy blooz-throb, somewhere between Spiritualized and X but totally unafraid of fringed-jacket harmonica choogle. Their self-titled album really is something: howling hook, riff, buildup, vamp, gorgeous layered production, everything rising beautifully into the sky and hanging there like clouds, held up by nothing. Worth mentioning in the same breath: the three or four really good songs from Superwolf. Most of the album is the sort of diffuse airy barely-there cooing folk stuff that I generally associate with Will Oldham even though I don't know that much about him, but the great songs (I'm thinking "My Home is the Sea" and "What Are You?" especially) have this great desperate underwater Lee Hazlewood wavering sparkle. Gorgeous like that.

(When Will Oldham lived in Baltimore, I hung out at his house once. He wasn't there. I watched one of his boar-hunting videos.)

Does High on Fire fit in with this whole classic-rock thing? Should I buy that album? I went to see them a couple of years ago because Black Eyes was opening, and I left after a couple of songs, but maybe I just wasn't in the right mood.

The LCD Soundsystem album really is as good as I was hoping it would be. "Tribulations" on headphones just about made me gasp. More when it sinks in.