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Holy Mountain – Ancient Astronauts (Chemikal Underground Records)

You know those albums that you just can’t turn up loud enough? The kind  that causes involuntary thrashing? The kind that could easily earn you a speeding ticket? Ancient Astronauts is one of those albums.

Leading on from their 2012 debut six track mini album Earth Measures, Ancient Astronauts is a riff-laden monstrous affair, all heavy gauge strings, distortion and feedback. But make no mistake, this is not metal, this is the kind of music that sounds more like it has it’s roots in Black Sabbath, Motorhead and Jimi Hendrix. The kind of stuff you dream of thrashing out when you first pick up a guitar. Not satisfied with using existing sounds either, Andy McGlone (guitars, vocals) builds his own amplifiers and FX pedals from scratch to get exactly the sounds he’s after.

The eight tracks that make the album up, often sounding like extended jams, go through multiple changes in tempo and style. The title track starts out with hints of BRMC, but around the three minute mark changes to what could be a completely different track altogether. Kicking in with something that sounds like the classic Ace of Spades, and there are plenty examples of this throughout. Hardly surprising given that this now three-piece started out life as an improvisational duo. The album is largely instrumental with what vocals (often chant like) there are coming through a Roland Space Chorus and furthering the bands heavy, psychedelic sound.

The album stands alone as a great slab of riffed-up-rock and this sound would be at it’s best live where the volume, riffs and powerful drumming could really hit home.

Rating: ★★★★☆


Holy Mountain play this week:
April 15th – Ramsgate – Ramsgate Music Hall
16th – London – The Black Heart
17th – Wakefield – The Hop
19th – Manchester – Fallow Café

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.