July 29, 2011

Portugal. The Man - In The Mountain In The Cloud (2011)

In The Mountain In The Clouds opens with the super catchy “So American” -- a blast of falsetto driven psychedelic rock n’ roll announcing that Portugal. The Man is back. They may now be on Atlantic Records, after stints with Equal Vision and Fearless Records, but the major label hasn’t disrupted the quality of their songwriting that made them a QuickCrit favorite. As with all of their recent albums, their sound continues to evolve. In The Mountain is not as sexy or funky as last year’s American Ghetto, ditching its glitchy electronic buzz and replacing the psychedelic soul of the Satanic Satanist, with cosmic glam. It all makes for even greater sonic grandeur on songs like the anthemic “Got It All (This Can't Be Living Now)" or the soaring “Everything You See (Kids Count Hallelujahs).” Guitars swirl and ring while the vocals alter pitch and pace. Lyrically, singer/guitarist John Gourley is still grappling with life in 21st century America. He seems to accept that we may all be fucked, but that’s just fate, and we might as well “be cool with it.” The songs build, crash and flow together nicely, closing with the "Sleep Forever", which escalates slowly into a wonderfully epic ballad -- a perfect closer to a fantastic album.


Nightrain said...

What is it with all the parenthetical song titles? Song titles written by lawyers.

"All Your Light (Times Like These)" is awesome!

awmercy said...

Good question. Maybe they couldn't make up their mind which one they liked better.

Action Santa Cruz said...

Great album.