Red Mountains - Slow Wander album review

Nordic stoner rockers make a foray beyond the Sabbath ground zero

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It’s been two years since Red Mountain’s debut, Down With The Sun – a full 12 months of which was apparently spent writing its follow-up. It’d be a fair wager that half that time again was spent rolling king-size Rizlas over a wellworn copy of Master Of Reality. While it wouldn’t be stoner rock without a nod to Birmingham’s finest, there are points where the Norwegians veer from homage into pastiche, particularly on closer Returning. Sabbath-worship aside, Slow Wander – named for the effect it will have on your gait – is a surprisingly complex album. Rat King is catchy in spite of its dirgey aspirations and Endless Ocean comes on like a sonic daydream. Paradoxically, Red Mountains are at their best when the distortion’s dialled back and the psychedelia takes hold, but their schizophrenic nature is all part of their charm.