Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 21 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 21
  2. Negative: 0 out of 21
  1. Rather than adhering to type, Black Mountain now have a catalogue of songs that respect and rival their influences.
  2. Wilderness Heart is probably the best new utilization of the Iommi/Page/Lynott grab bag you'll hear because, to put it simply, it's going to appeal to men AND women.
  3. Previous albums saw the band go for a murkier, more spaced-out vibe, but this time it's more about concision and songs.
  4. 82
    Though the songs and tone may be different, there is a distinct, familiar sound that makes this undoubtedly a Black Mountain record-and that's a wonderful thing.
  5. It's these hints of darkness, together with an ability to take on several differing styles of music in the course of one album, that make Black Mountain such a compelling listen. They remain a captivating proposition, with an arsenal of powerful riffs now at their disposal.
  6. There's a focus here that would have your average Grateful Dead fan running screaming for the hills. And that in itself is a triumph. [Oct 2010, p.112]
  7. 80
    It's not easy to make Sabbath-style proto-metal sound fresh, but Black Mountain have a way of writing songs that go to the places you hope they will without descending into cliche. [Oct. 2010, p. 92]
  8. Some might lament the increased accessibility and decreased experimentation, but it doesn't take long to realize that these tracks do as much in four minutes as the 18-minute epics in Black Mountain's past.
  9. For a band that has made jammy excess and hippie-fied eccentricity vital parts of its musical DNA, the relative straightness of Wilderness Heart sometimes comes at the expense of distinctiveness.
  10. Wilderness Heart is tight but never overly controlled, and it varies in all the ways you could possibly want it to. It's a Black Mountain record through and through, that's for sure.
  11. For an album that presents a more assured, swaggering Black Mountain, it's a minor disappointment that Wilderness Heart doesn't so much climax as gradually wind down, without a show-stopping finale to crown the victory lap. But even in their quietest moments, the band can still leave you unsettled.
  12. Black Mountain understand their chosen form better than any other contemporary stoner rock bands still running.
  13. BM have upped their ante with Wilderness Heart by concentrating more on excellent songwriting and close-cornered arranging than sprawling heavy rock bacchanalia.
  14. This album, like their previous two, has one moment of utterly triumphant rock Valhalla amidst a bunch of pretty good retro-soaked poses.
  15. Taken individually, the songs are beefy enough to satisfy stoner-rock munchies, but as an album, Heart is hardly cohesive.
  16. The Vancouver quintet play flower-brained folk and Satan-friendly hard rock to evoke that moment when the hippie dream got creepy. Their third disc is their heaviest and most concise.
  17. 60
    An interim record before their next assault, perhaps. [Oct 2010, p.87]
  18. The farther it strays into new territory, the older and duller and more dubious Wilderness Heart sounds.
  19. For Wilderness Heart remains, ultimately, a collection of ten tracks of roughly equal length, each taking roughly one classic idea and pickling it in (admittedly, impeccably realised) production gloss and traditionalist technique.
  20. With Wilderness Heart, Black Mountain has narrowed their focus too much. [Summer 2010, p.77]
  21. If only the album lived up to the awesomeness of its album cover. The band's willingness to shake up their own sound so early in their development is admirable, but the its decision to move the sound to a more generic direction is a major drag.

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