Black Mountain – “Licensed To Drive”

Later this month, the Vancouver-bred psychedelic warriors Black Mountain will follow up their 2016 album IV with a new one called Destroyer. And guess what: It fucking rules. Black Mountain have always been great at doing all the things that bongwater-gargling riff-monsters should be good at doing. They have titanic canyon-spanning hooks. They’ve got enough dynamic range to switch their style up a few times within the space of a single song. And of course they can do crush-you-to-dust fuzzed-out guitar riffage. On Destroyer, all of that is in very clear evidence. It’s enough to fill up your soul.

We’ve already posted the early album tracks “Future Shade” and “Boogie Lover.” And today, Black Mountain have also shared “Licensed To Drive,” another big winner. This one starts out with eerie horror-movie theatrics, locks into ’70s-style dragon-trudge metal, and climaxes with a wild Edgar Winter-ish synth solo. It’s flaming-sword music, music for blasting off into the cosmos on a tricked-out GTO.

Of the song, frontman Stephen McBean says this: “A riff in A flat and some Neu / Nugent / Newman Motorik hustle. Was the vacation better than the journey or did the drive etch itself into your soul? I’d like to thank the DMV for the inspiration.” Hell yeah, motherfucker. Listen below.

Destroyer is out 5/24 via Jagjaguwar. Pre-order it here.