Black Mountain/Blood on the Wall - Local 506 - Feb 17, 2008
Drinks at Carolina Brewery beforehand (while transfixed to a Duke loss on TV) wasted the Blood on the Wall set. Attestation to the band - after hearing three songs live, the only merch I left with was their latest record. They're on the rise. I wish I still lived in Brooklyn.
After a short transition, Black Mountain appeared in all of the glory I expected. Canadian lads (and lass) representing their country like they were The Band. Bearded lead singer/guitarist Stephen McBean backed up his 70s psychedelic/hard-rock-influenced-with-a-red-bandana-in-my-worn-out-blue-jeans-backpocket with the chops he has exhibited on the band's two full-lengths. Moments of his performance shuttled me back to Cameron Crowe's 'Almost Famous' [one of my favorite film music biopics - fictitious or otherwise - (please watch D.A. Pennebaker's 'Don't Look Back' if you haven't before - my absolute favorite music biopic/documentary)] despite my best efforts to resist. Though McBean is widely regarded as the leader of the band, the performance was driven by Moog synthesizer extraordinaire Jeremy Schmidt, drummer Joshua Wells and bassist Matt Camirand. The latter two providing the structure for Schmidt's and McBean's winding melodies. Amber Webber - the female complement to Stephen McBean - stood front and center on the stage and though her straight-out-of-highschool appearance could have discounted her presence, whenever she sang she might as well have been channeling Grace Slick from Jefferson Starship/Airplane. The band is very tight and they know what they are doing. Though they surely have many tags and have found themselves in many critics' pigeonholes, it is obvious they enjoy their work and will have a bright future, public be damned.