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Vividly Iridescent Mountainscape Iridescent is the third LP of post-rock ambience and colossal riffs from Mountainscape 

Vividly Iridescent Mountainscape

Iridescent is the third LP of post-rock ambience and colossal riffs from Mountainscape 

by Lee Paul,
first published: June, 2024

approximate reading time: minutes

There are ostinatos here that wouldn't be out of place on a Hans Zimmer soundtrack...

(Celestial Diadem)

On ‘Iridescent’ Mountainscape's third album, the instrumental trio continue to evolve their unique blend of cinematic post-metal, weaving together post-rock ambience and colossal riffs, ethereal melodies with hypnotic blackgaze. The result is a bracing, dramatic and eviscerating whole.

Mountainscape formed in the UK in mid-2019, having previously played together in a variety of projects. Their first LP, the critically acclaimed ‘Acceptance’ (Trepanation Recordings) came in 2021 and was swiftly followed by the giant sounds of ‘Atoms Unfurling’ at the end of 2022. As epic as those records are, ‘Iridescent’ presents Mountainscape’s most vivid and  accomplished compositions so far. 

Who doesn’t love explorations of dreamlike shoegaze melded with earth shattering heaviness? The riffs are uncompromising and wantonly huge, enveloped in melodies that grow and transform across the tracks. The twists and turns, no matter how we ready ourselves for them, are unexpected.

The album begins with ‘Belonging’ which for the first half is reminiscent of We Lost The Sea's classic ‘A Gallant Gentleman’. Layered, subtle ambience grows over simple, yet immersive chords. The drums groove when they arrive leading to an explosion of distortion.  ‘Belonging’ resolves into a blackgaze style melody careening towards the precipice of incoming riffs. The dissolution in tremolo guitar harks back to the initially clean melodic introduction, by which time you’ll have been on an enervating circular sonic journey extending to just over ten minutes. 

‘Towering Monoliths’ is a wreathing leviathan of doom inspired rhythms and chunky guitar work. Riffs redolent of death metal records for sure, get mixed with the atmospherics of say, post-metal giants Year of No Light.

Iridescent is an uncompromised and uncompromising recording. It is by turns filmic, ethereal, pounding and in many instances leans into library catalogue academia. It’s informed and knowing. There are ostinatos here that wouldn't be out of place on a Hans Zimmer soundtrack. The tunes are like miniature symphonia soups, reducing and restoring ideas through repetition, and circular patterns, like tourniquet twisted Escher tessellations, themes and variations and it feels, oh those feels! It feels like much is owed to contemporary avant-garde composers like Cage and Glass and the earlier stretching out of ideas and shenanigan challenges of say Stravinsky and Bartók, with electric guitars and distortion boxes aforethought.   

You might not hear it all at first, maybe not on the first listen, but the ambition and scope of this record places Mountainscape at the pinnacle of intelligent, hard British rock. They cast a giant shadow, they are coming, I hope you are ready.

essential information
Mountainscape can be found on Bandcamp here→ 

Lee Paul

I like to look at things while listening to things I am not looking at. But doesn't everyone.
about Lee Paul »»



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