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The Wine-Dark Sea
The Osiris Club
Full Review and Video Clip
Rotation Radar
Over the Rim
by Deathbell
Sound Preview Lab
Sound Preview Lab
On The Road
(Absinthe Moon)
Staff Rating: Crank this to 9.8 of 11
|    Editor's Pick
Progressive rock, Stoner rock
Sounds Like:
Tool, Kyuss, Colour Haze
There’s something very intriguing about this album... the trippy SpongeBob-like album cover. While this peaked our interest we have done the screening for you and are here to tell you this is one fucking solid album. What eventually unfolds is a dark and engrossing complex majestic journey through the minds of Mountainwolf. The trio , hailing from Annapolis, Maryland have released a thought provoking sophomore album entitled Absinthe Moon.

After a multitude of rotations what we have uncovered is absolute perfection from tracks 3 "Krishna" through the closer "Sex Messiah". We found the first two cuts sound a out of place and do not work with the flow of the album. There is not a hiccup to be heard on these last eight tracks. Something truly phenomenal kicks in high gear for the trio at the start of "Krishna" and does not let up. A myriad of overcast complex rhythms and swirling jaw-dropping grooves ensue. The band does a tremendous job with contrast in accentuating highs and lows, taking you to delusional crawls to blissful peaks. Maynard vocal styles and Undertow and AEnima groove influences are apparent, but ultimately Mountainwolf bleeds genuine energy and depth.

Vocal Performance:
9.6 out of 11

Weight of the Heavy:
9.1 out of 11

Lyrics and Song Structure:
9.7 out of 11

Fretwork Prowess:
10.2 out of 11

Overall Album Flow:
9.1 out of 11 (were it not for the first two tracks, this would be well over 10)

10.3 out of 11

Album Cover Aesthetics:
8.1 out of 11

Production Value:
9.8 out of 11

Standout Tracks:
The back to back deluge in "Water" and "Tsunami" are absolutely mesmerizing. The Kyuss fretwork channeling within "Water" is unrivaled with crisp clean melodies. This track morphs into "Tsunami" which bleeds some of the most impressive contrast this side of the planet.

Alcohol Pairing:
This album warrants two suggestions... ’The Cask’ RavenBeer’s Bavarian style double bock. The Cask named for the Poe short story The Cask of Amontillado. A dark, smooth, sweet, full-bodied & robust beer that warms the insides from its 8% alcohol. This craft beer contains complex notes of dark heaviness. So perfect for Absinthe Moon.

Second we recommend tying in the Absinthe theme with some Seafoam Fizz. Spirit, citrus, egg white and soda water come together for a light, frothy drink. Absinthe is a perfect fizz candidate—its intensity is tamed by the citrus and egg white, letting you appreciate the flavor without feeling like you got punched in the palate. Instructions: In a cocktail shaker without ice, combine 2 ounces absinthe, 1/2 ounce lemon juice, 1/2 ounce lime juice and 3/4 ounce simple syrup (equal parts sugar and hot water). Add one egg white. Shake all that up hard without ice. Add ice and shake again. Strain into a tall glass without ice. Top with 4 ounces of club soda.

Lasting Impression:
Sure we could gloss over the how the first two tracks don't fit with the flow and give that superficial glowing review, but we tell it like it is. The album falls short of a 10+ score for us due to the aforementioned hiccups. This album dabbles with brilliance once "Krishna" kicks in. Even the perhaps overdone cliche acoustic closer "Rain Dance" strikes our fancy with its ability to allow us to decompress and unwind. - 12/17/2017

Track Listing:
1. TWST (2:19)
2. Black Lung (1:54)
3. Krishna (5:25)
4. Lord Reekis (6:25)
5. APRC (7:07)
6. Absinthe Moon (5:07)
7. Water (6:21)
8. Tsunami (5:17)
9. Zokar (7:50)
10. Sex Messiah (6:49)
11. Rain Dance (6:08)

Band Members:

Chris Gipple - bass
Thomas Coster - percussion
Tyler Vaillant - vocals/guitar

Follow Mountainwolf: Mountainwolf Music / Facebook / Bandcamp
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