If you weren’t aware, there’s a little channel out there on YouTube called Let’s Talk about Math Rock. We could talk about it all day, but honestly, Steve talks better than us, and in a charming accent with a ton of video – we can’t recommend him enough.
Anyhow, the channel is a magical, mathematical place that celebrates pretty much all of our favorite stuff. It’s also where the cool kids have been getting essential lessons in chords structure, melody, and songwriting – oh, yeah and he’s in the South Korean band Mountains, so today, we’re stoked to give one to the tried and true mathers among ye.
The album starts, perhaps appropriately, with a small comb through the ol’ ambient foothills of “Beyond This Point are Mountains” before stretching its legs with the “Friend” and “Necessary.” Stretch those yams and climb Old Friends below.
For a through and through Midwest emo / math rock album, songs like “Goodbye” and “Korean Football” throw in some welcome mixups to keep things fresh with synth-y breaks and switching up the musical, and literal, language with a post-punk twist. Oh, did we mention there’s a guest feature? None other than the #impetulant Garrett Karp (TTNG, Dead Bird) makes his brassy presence known once again as an invisible fourth member on several tracks, with particularly prodigious performances on “Restarts” and “Past (Japanese Bonus Track).” The English version is also cool.
All in all, Old Friends feels aptly named, reflecting so much of what we love about math rock, but with the understanding of someone who’s been around it long enough to know when to spice things up. If you’re looking for a perfectly balanced trek through Midwest-emo flavored math rock, do yourself a solid and head for the Mountains.
Now they just need to tour with Hikes so we can all get in shape… hey, that would be a pretty sick tour, y’all, just saying!
Man, we almost said hills at the end there. Can you imagine closing the writeup with ‘head for the hills?’ What is this, Creem? Anyway – check out the album and more from the band here and buy us a coffee here to rejuvenate our tiny, burn out brains. If only for a moment. Coming up we’ve got Space Corolla, Right Chipper, and more. Thanks for reading!