Montanus – ‘Death Meditations of a Westerner’ EP

An abundance of forest imagery and existential introspection permeates Death Meditations of a Westerner, the poignantly titled EP from Montanus. The Norwegian singer/songwriter crafted these tracks during a period of pondering existential questions, while frequently wandering alone in Norway’s beautiful nature. The result is a riveting journey of self-discovery and finding peace amidst chaos, showcased through a varied sound palette. From the serene folk musings of the opening “Take Me Forest” to the resonating rock ferocity of “Death Meditation,” the EP captivates with its depth and intensity.

Truly confronting personal strife often involves a head-on confrontation with one’s ego, and the opening track, “Take Me Forest,” exemplifies this wonderfully. An acoustic-forward mystique accompanies this forest-set personal reckoning. Lush vocals proclaim, “I could be a part of you, of everything,” leading into gorgeous acoustical trickles and a dynamic burst of electric guitars, setting a powerful tone for the EP.

“Home in the Mountains” continues with a steady folk sound, infused with bursts of emotion; it evokes themes of retreating from the forest and igniting hope as one moves away from a more somber state. The track’s jubilant instrumentation at its mid-point highlights this sense of renewal. The following “I Guess I’ll Always be a Rover” features gorgeous vocal harmonies and embraces the tranquility of nature, finding solace in perpetual searching.

The artist’s cover of “My Little Corner of the World” offers a fulfilling send-off to the EP, reminiscent of Aztec Camera with its blend of steady acoustics and frolicking jangles. Preceding this, “Death Meditation” melds folk and rock seamlessly, contemplating mortality with gripping intensity. The EP concludes fittingly with “My Little Corner of the World,” providing a breath of relief amidst the tumult, showcasing enthralling tonal variety and thematic cohesion. Death Meditations of a Westerner is an impactful EP release from Montanus.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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