Lightning Bolt – Hypermagic Mountain

Lightning Bolt
Hypermagic Mountain

The feeling one should be left with after enduring a little under an hour of pounding, chaotic noise rock is not a feeling of being unaffected. At the very least, you would think the listener would be confused and/or annoyed, but I feel absolutely nothing. Known for being loud and chaotic, Lightning Bolt is certainly that, but what exactly is the listener supposed to come away with?

This duo of Brians (Gibson-bass, Chippendale-drums) unleash upon us their fourth full-length effort titled Hypermagic Mountain. From what I know, this is their most controlled and polished release to date, with a renewed focus on rock riffs. The bass still rarely lets up, but the melodies and rhythms have far more clarity than before, making for a more memorable experience.

Let me revise what I said before; Hypermagic Mountain leaves me feeling unaffected, but at least there are a few memorable moments as opposed to on past efforts. For instance, the chunky dissonance of “Mega Ghost” has a certain acerbic bite that could almost be considered metal. “2 Morro Morro Land” starts the album off with a memorable lead riff that is epic for Lightning Bolt standards.

If you were into Lightning Bolt before, there is no reason you won’t absolutely love this album. If you were sort of sitting on the fence with them before, this may be the album that converts you into a fan. However, if you are like me and never bought into the noise-rock movement, this is at least a step in the right direction, but probably still not going to win you over.