There is no other band quite like The Mountain Carol. Bringing waves of atmospheric, electro-pop, and illustrious melodies, they bring listeners on a sonic journey of exploration and reflection. Yesterday, the band self-released a music video for “The Party’s Over” – in classic Mountain Carol style, it raises more questions than it may resolve. The track comes off the band’s latest album Starkiller and the Banshees, joining alongside their videos for “Dino” and “Sway” released earlier this spring.
Self-shot and produced, the band recalls a number of characters from other videos, slowly piecing together potential segments of a greater story. Asked on the mystical meaning, the band said, “The meaning lives somewhere near the feeling you have before you ask the question. There is little to offer in terms of conscious explanation. It’s definitely not meant to be just weird for weird’s sake or artsy for artsy’s sake. It’s meant to hit you in the guts for reasons that are hard to articulate and when I watch it that’s what it does. I see new layers each time and it doesn’t always operate on the rational level. I keep forming my own personal interpretation. I don’t think it’s able to be resolved; it is not a quality of this story to have one definite meaning. Rather many, which is much more exciting.”
The band plans to continue to release further music videos, citing an ambitious venture to shoot a video for each track off their latest album. “One will involve bespoke stop-motion animation experiments, another will be a reimagining of a previous video, and one might take an evening to watch.” PopMatters, who premiered the album, described The Mountain Carol as, “offering a consistently intriguing hodge-podge of charming stylistic fusions that cement the trio as equal parts imaginative, go-getting, and skilled.” Released via Third Eye Industries, Starkiller and the Banshees provides a decadent and enlightening journey for each listener to explore – with the videos only providing to further immerse the experience.
Full of passion and energy, The Mountain Carol continue on a path uniquely their own, and invite you along for the continued adventure. They teased, “We are already eager to hone and record the songs for our next album. Here’s a hint: “Birds.””
Starkiller and the Banshees – album out now; listen on:
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About The Mountain Carol:
Quite possibly the most important band to come out of the North Country, The Mountain Carol broke all pre-existing rules of regional success with their atmospheric, jazzy electro-pop and quickly found themselves at the top of the heap with few true contenders.
Forged from the ashes of Townshendesque power-pop group The Tavi in 2011 and led by two reclusive musical stalwarts from the backwater town of Saranac, NY, a name more associated with a popular beer than popular music, the project took shape after guitarist Austtin Petrashune returned home from a hiatus-causing 2-year stint as a costumed fiddle player in a Hong Kong amusement park. Meanwhile, in between shifts at his day job as a parcel delivery driver, keyboardist and primary songwriter Bruce Wilson had forsaken the drums to hone his chops on the piano, developing a playing style reminiscent of jazz maestro Dave Brubeck while retaining the best of his long-beloved 60s pop influences, in particular the compositional ambition of Pet Sounds-era Beach Boys, crafting danceable epics accompanied by the quaint drum machine of a broken Casio MT-500 keyboard.
After a period of in-studio experimentation, gig-seeking frustration, and failed attempts at past-present reconciliation, Petrashune and Bruce struck oil when they reached out to upstate indie impresario Matt Hall, a multi-talented and well-connected Syracuse-cum-Plattsburgh native creative known for his innumerable bootstrapped musical releases under several aliases including, but not limited to, Marco Polio, Chakra Abuse, and Antwon Levee (not to mention his notoriety as auteur of the satirical online variety show affectionately titled “TRASHburgh”). Although a seasoned gigging drummer with Adirondack punk firebrands Comrade Nixon, infamous defunct rap collective Plattsburgh Home Team, and a short service in retro yawn-rock royalty Broken Arrow Hearts, among many others, Hall left his comfort zone to accept a position as The Mountain Carol’s percussionist, manager, and, for their first demo, de-facto producer. A Roland Octapad now pollinating The Mountain Carol’s spacious downtempo surf-funk with heavy accents equally inspired by dub and doom metal, the group was able expand their tonal palette far beyond their local contemporaries while keeping the edgy, improvisatory sensibility congruent with both the stoned Bonnaroo attendee and discerning hipster alike. While the band’s eponymous debut EP was released in a relatively straightforward manner, The Mountain Carol seems intent on manipulating the modern music consumer, releasing a trickle of live recordings, music videos, and cryptic artistic statements through a variety of media channels, and often first via their mysterious subscription fan-club “The Divine Council.” Their debut album, Starkiller and the Banshees, was released June 1, 2018 on Third Eye Industries.