[Release date 28.10.16]
How far is it from the west coast of Australia to the west coast of the USA ? Turns out that, musically, it’s about a five minute trip in a space-buggy powered by stardust and riff-diesel. Fremantle’s boogie-psych rockers, Datura4, have followed up last year’s excellent debut album, Demon Blues, with a very worthy offering in “Hairy Mountain”.
In a changing world of bad news – Rick Parfitt’s retirement and a Phil Collins comeback tour (the world needed neither), it’s good to know we can rely on Datura4 not to fix something which ain’t broke.
To be honest, I was holding my breath for this second release as “Demon Blues” was so damn fine but “the 4” call poppycock and piffle on that “difficult second album syndrome”. For the unfamiliar, think about the support band on a Blackberry Smoke or Chris Robinson Brotherhood tour that really turns your head and you have the cut of Datura4’s jib – unpretentious, psychotropic in parts, moody and groovy throughout.
From the get-go, opener “Fools Gold Rush” combines a mesmeric meat and potatoes riff with silver-toned, California-in-the-60s vocals – a statement of real intent. “Confide in Me” is a tasty little tip-of-the-hat to twelve bar simplicity that wouldn’t have been out of place on a circa-1970 Quo album whilst “Uphill Climb” is cool and grubby before meandering off to a hazy coda.
“Mary Carroll Park” channels a Georgia Satellites-like romp and slide and “Greedy World” has a groove tighter than a fish’s vagina.
The title track, “Hairy Mountain”, has Datura4 at their hirsute best with the rousing, rockin’ finish lighting up the song after the obligatory quiet middle bit – formulaic…maybe, but effective – yep, in spades.
With a fairly unique blend of ganja-grooves and big, retro-vocals, Datura4 have duxed it again with “Hairy Mountain” – they may be from beyond the Black Stump, but this album is ripper. Fire up the mull and tell me I’m wrong. ****
Review by Mark “Mad Dog” Shaw
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