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BLACK MOUNTAIN U.F.O
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 2 October 2011
Peter Bruntnell. or "Britain's best kept secret" as he has become known in certain media circles is a singer-songwriter based in North Devon and producing vaguely alt-country, vaguely rock albums filled with wonderful, memorable songs that far surpass the output of more commercially successful songwriters in similar genres. Black Mountain UFO follows a similar style to the last album, "Peter and the Murder of Crows" in being largely acoustic but parts of this album represent a bit of a shift towards the dreamy psychadelia he always threatened to produce but has now realised.

Kicking off with the rocky "St Christopher" the album has a feel of classic Bruntnell from the "Normal For Bridgewater" and "Ghost in a Spitfire" era but takes a sharp turn at track 4, the stunning "Reggie Perrin" into wistfully psychadelic pastoral rock, all harmonies and autumnal strings taking the Reggie Perrin character from the British TV sitcom and imagining him leaving society behind to live rough in the countryside. Lyrics like poetry and music with an emotional impact combine to create a true masterpiece. Following on from this, the title track has a good deal to live up to but does so with a vengeance. One of the most blissful 6 minutes of music released in 2011 the song explores UFO sightings in the Black Mountains (of Dakota ?) and their impact upon the narrator. Acoustic for the most part the song soars and dips back to reflective, rich acoustic strumming with some wonderful studio effects to add a little weirdness to the piece.

Tailing off a little in the last few tracks the album is worth buying for "Reggie Perrin" and "Black Mountain UFO" but there is much more to enjoy here. This one took longer to grow on me than any previous Bruntnell album but now it has I can confidently say this is his finest hour to date. Will it make Bruntnell a household name ? Probably not, will it garner him any new fans, I hope so. No-one working in the British music industry deserves success more than Bruntnell.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 8 October 2011
Best album of 2011

Fantastic pop - Bruise on the Sky, Drive Away, Ghost Dog

and downright the 2 best songs I've heard this year - Reggie Perrin and Black Window.

Best artist in Britain by a long, long way
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 20 June 2011
Peter Bruntnell seemed destined always to be seen as an undiscovered genius. Certainly he has been placed in the alt-country ghetto to the extent that his last album (Peter And The Murder Of Crows) was still reviewed in the Americana sections of magazines despite having absolutely no connection with the genre. Credit to him, then, for making the out and out pop album he has always threatened, exploding with irresistible tunes which just won't go out of your head. Black Mountain UFO is immediate but also rewards repeated listening. No amount of attempted comparisons can pigeon-hole his uniquely mellifluous voice and the sensitive, layered production (Moog, mellotron and drones add to the depth) completes the atmosphere. He immediately goes for the jugular with the triple-whammy of up-tempo songs which kick off the album, but just when you think you've got him sussed, psychedelic masterpieces like Reggie Perrin and the extraordinary title track make you reconsider. The variety continues with beautiful acoustic songs like Black Window contrasting with the Sparklehorse close-mic style of Ghost Dog and the truly extraordinary Church Of The Quivering Brethren.
There's no one else like Bruntnell. Please don't let him pass you by this time.
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on 26 December 2011
Peter Bruntnell, an English singer-songwriter, has had little commercial success and is hardly known outside of a small group of diehard fans. Allmusic.com, for example, the online music encyclopedia, doesn't even have his biography and only lists his last two albums without reviews. For someone of such clear musical and lyrical talent this is nothing short of criminal. This year's release, Black Mountain UFO, may not be his best (that honour goes to Ends of the Earth and Normal for Bridgwater) but it's still way ahead of most other new releases that I listened to during the year.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 17 June 2011
Peter Bruntnell's new album comes replete with a ringing endorsement from Phill Jupitus on the back cover, in which Bruntnell is described as 'one of the best kept secrets of the British live music scene'. This could also be said of his studio work, but although the 'faint echoes of Gram Parsons' that Jupitus alludes to are plentiful in his early material, there is little trace of Peter Bruntnell's English Americana on this, his eighth album release.

Bruntnell's last record, the excellent Peter And The Murder of Crows, came out in 2008, and moved him away from the influence of the alt-country scene, in particular the sound of Son Volt whose style pervaded albums like Normal For Bridgwater (on which the band featured) and the splendid Ends Of The Earth. This time, Black Mountain UFO feels less stylistically sure-footed, Bruntnell's vocals sounding occasionally like an English Josh Rouse, laid back, detached and mellow. It is a curious record, which begins promisingly with 'St Christopher', but then begins to meander through a series of songs that sound worryingly similar. If Joni Mitchell had swung into 'Both Sides Now' following the intro to the bizarrely titled 'Penelope Keith Blues', it would have come as little surprise, so similar is it to the intro of Joni's own song. 'Ghost Dog' has a pleasant guitar-based chug to it, which comes as something of a relief after the inoffensive acoustics that have preceded it, and 'Marianne' is equally pleasant, though none of these songs come alive in the same way that earlier material like 'Here Come The Swells' did so effortlessly.

The closing song, 'Church Of The Quivering Brethren' is an instrumental, that begins with a Byrdsian burst of sixties psychedelia which transmutes itself into something that would not have sounded out of place on one of The Beatles' more experimental tracks, featuring as it does a dreamy lap steel and Indian harmonium. In a way, it is the most interesting thing on the album, which is a piece of work that never quite gets off the ground, or fulfils the Pink Floydian echoes that rumble underneath it. Very much a statement of Englishness from an artist formerly at home in transatlantic clothes, it is not one of Peter Bruntnell's stronger efforts, but does little to detract from Phill Jupitus's recommendation to 'seek him out and spread the word'.
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on 8 February 2012
Another great album release from Mr.Bruntnell! He deserves way more credit for his talent because it is so good and very rare also!

Nice to have true british talent! Keep going Pete!
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Normal For Bridgwater
Normal For Bridgwater by Peter Bruntnell (Audio CD - 2002)

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