Will Johnson – ‘Wire Mountain’ (2019)
As of late, Texas musicians have been digging deep, where Will Johnson is no exception, teetering on the edge of his rickety chair, breathing life into this mindful haunting and dusty album, Wire Mountain, though just just barely. It’s not an effortless release, it’s challenging, one filled with a dizzying amount of textures and painted from a new palette, with this being his second release featuring Britton Beisenherz.
Wire Mountain is filled with more slow paced anthems then I’ve ever imagined could possibly exist, nearly bordering on slow-core, while blossoming with compelling fragile lilting lullabies devoid of all hope, fraught with disaster, where presence of mind exits for as long as it takes each song to finish. That said, the electric guitar work hovers in the background creating a frosted atmosphere in treacherous manner, while finger picked acoustic guitars dangle their notes in a minimalist fashion of foreboding and warning, like the calm before the storm, yet that storm perpetually lingers on the horizon, held at bay by the album’s final track “You Were, Just Barely You,” shifting gears and giving a heartfelt glimmer of hope.
This is certainly not a record for everyone, it’s not a happy spin, the music is treacherously deep and compelling, not a place one should linger long … or alone.
– Jenell Kesler