You might know this band from their recent voyage across North America while on tour with Portishead. Or you might be like me, and have absolutely no idea who these folks are. This is their sophomore release and it’s a welcome hello as this stuff caught me by damn nice surprise!
PLEASE NOTE THIS IS A PRE-SALE -
we will be shipping this slightly before the release date of the album which is the 25th february
THOUGHT FORMS - GHOST MOUNTAIN LTD EDITION BLUE VINYL LP
all copies ordered exclusively through Invada will come with a bonus art print hand made by the bands Charlie Romijn - this offer is exclusive to INVADA customers and nowhere else.
Thought Forms : Ghost Mountain
It takes all of the first 80 seconds of Bristol trio Thought Forms second album, Ghost Mountain, to realize that this is a group who have moved on substantially from their debut of three years ago. Indeed, if their self-titled debut in 2009 was about finding the dynamic limits of their atmospheric sound, gently prodding and probing varying elements, then the huge great slab of guitar that greets you instantly on their follow-up roars with the confidence of a band who‚Äôve found their level from which to fully explore their creative expression.
Charlie Romijn (guitars / vocals), Deej Dhariwal (guitars / vocals) and Guy Metcalfe (drums) have already made their mark live ‚Äď cultivating a colossal sound that bands twice their number would struggle to re-create - with appearances at ATP Festival I‚Äôll Be Your Mirror and a US tour support slot with Portishead in 2011. Indeed, with a recent support tour with Geoff Barrow‚Äôs Beak> and, of course, putting Ghost Mountain out on Invada, there‚Äôs clearly a strong link to their fellow Bristolians ‚Äď more so when you consider that Portishead live member Jim Barr produced the new record. Barr‚Äôs input was vital, says the group‚Äôs Charlie Romijn: ‚ÄúHe totally understood what we're about and where we are coming from,‚ÄĚ she explains. ‚ÄúHe really helped us to develop our ideas, enhancing or changing songs we weren‚Äôt sure about. We completely trusted him and he's really pushed us further than we'd have managed on our own.‚ÄĚ
Though the group have fans in Portishead, don‚Äôt allow the link to act as any indication of their sound. The album veers between two opposites, from brisk, scuzzy American garage-rock influenced numbers to brutal, anguished noise constructions of ethereal doom, where it feels like they‚Äôre tapping into a similar dark psyche to groups like Godspeed You! Black Emperor and Circle. With a psych slant too informing tracks like ‚ÄėAfon‚Äô and ‚ÄėBurn Me Clean‚Äô ‚Äď where vocals are almost as though a ritualistic call to on high ‚Äď the scope of Ghost Mountain‚Äôs sonic terrain is vast, the result of a varied approach to song writing where wholes form out of group jams ‚Äď in the case of ‚ÄėBurn Me Clean‚Äô from an improvised set supporting Master Musicians Of Bukkake ‚Äď or from the chrysalis of an idea presented by just one of the trio.
It‚Äôs a clear move away from their debut album, though retaining the group‚Äôs penchant for creating vast atmospheres; yet Romijn doesn‚Äôt feel their approach has altered too much, just that renewed confidence has allowed them to commit to their processes more resolutely. ‚ÄúThe odd thing is that the songs on Ghost Mountain are of similar lengths to those on the self-titled album, yet they feel more direct‚ÄĚ she says. ‚ÄúMaybe it‚Äôs because there‚Äôs now a lot more vocals and clearer lyrics involved ‚Äď something that‚Äôs definitely come through increased confidence. Additionally maybe we've had more patience in developing the tracks over time, playing around with the structures and instrumentations a lot more until they felt right.‚ÄĚ
Thematically, the group are coy on the album‚Äôs meanings, though what is clear is that subject matters are extremely personal to a tight-knit band who consider each other ‚Äúfamily‚ÄĚ. What they do give away is somewhat cryptic; the album‚Äôs title comes from a gigantic mountain range as big as the Alps that‚Äôs hidden under the Antartic‚Äôs ice and snow; song titles are a little more illustrative, both in theme and in clues as to the group‚Äôs influences. ‚ÄėAfon‚Äô is Welsh for river, the group explaining that it ‚Äúspeaks to us of connections and something which eternally changes yet remaining the same at the core‚ÄĚ; ‚ÄėOnly Hollow‚Äô is a tip of the cap to My Bloody Valentine‚Äôs ‚ÄėOnly Shallow‚Äô. Then there‚Äôs ‚ÄėO‚Äô, called that because of the shape of the letter, the group using it to represent what they call ‚Äúa circle of negativity‚ÄĚ.
Negativity would suggest a bleakness to this album, and whilst in much of Ghost Mountain‚Äôs fire and brimstone there is plenty that could be construed as despair, the abrasion in it suggests something more conflicted; a battle between shades of dark and light, universal but potent battles between love and hate, of hope and loss. When flung together with the power that Thought Forms has, it makes for a quite formidable proposition.
- Maybe Buy
- Not My Style
- Too Expensive