Hailing from San Jose, California, the genre-bending instrumental trio The Mountain Chimes release a dynamic and energy-bursting song, "Wilt."
Formed in 2015 by childhood friends Mark Mamuric and Matt Mullen, The Mountain Chimes played local Bay Area gigs as a guitar and bass act, seeking a needed drummer. As Nick Aganad came to the rescue in 2016, The Mountain Chimes set sail into their careers with psychedelic and textured songs through sounds like math-rock, alternative, and jazz.
Submerging us into their West Coast sound through their latest song, "Wilt," The Mountain Chimes offer an intense and broad dynamic range through drummer Nick Aganad's tight transitions, Matt Mullen's groovy bass licks, and Mark Mamuric's melodic guitar bursts. Although The Mountain Chimes are an instrumental group, they offer brilliant sonic storylines with their unique sound.
Opening "Wilt" with Mark Mamuric's soothing electric guitar picking and Nick Aganad's jazzy drum patterns, we're met with a gentle breakdown through the wavy West Coast-inspired guitars that sing us into bliss and wonder. Moving into more of a hard-hitting tone as we continue, Matt Mullen brings us deeper into the track's low-end with his thumping bassline that brings a crisp and sharp element to the piece.
This track is fueled with an array of instrumental transitions, and we're more than impressed with The Mountain Chimes' ability to take us through several different tones and feels with tight and secure instrumentation. Reaching the end of the piece with more of a dreamy and calming tone, we're in awe of each dynamic transition and shift that The Mountain Chimes delivered within this track.
Don't miss out on the pure instrumental bliss that The Mountain Chimes have created with their latest song, "Wilt," as they define versatility within sonic arrangements.
Seeing as your group is an instrumental act, did you have any sort of inspiration for your track "Wilt"? Or was this track born from a jam session?
We wrote Wilt roughly 3 years ago with our guitarist Mark, introducing a series of newly composed riffs at one of our rehearsals. Wilt actually happens to be one of our earlier tunes and at the time, our musical influences were drawing the likes of several math rock groups; particularly Chon for their intricate guitar lines, Covet for their melancholic harmonies, and the Fall of Troy for their fierce breakdowns.
We structured Wilt based on three movements, each of which conveys contrasting moods: the opening section expressing a sense of serenity, the middle section portraying fierceness, and the closing section being rather meditative. We strongly feel these expressions best characterize each movement of Wilt.
Could you take us through your creative process when formulating the many transitions and shifts you presented within "Wilt"?
Our creative process typically starts off with presenting new ideas or riffs during rehearsals; mostly coming from our guitarist, Mark. We would then take those ideas and collectively construct an overall arc for our music. With Wilt, in particular, our approach was a continuous stream of ideas; later finding out that we structured the tune as “Through Composed Form” dividing Wilt into three main sections A-B-C. Using various transitions between each section, we balance the listener’s experience utilizing abrupt changes, gradual build-ups, and open spaces of occasionally harsh noise.
We remember working on countermelodies in the opening section, involving a trade-off between tapping guitar and bass lines, eventually finishing the section with both instruments playing their countermelodies again simultaneously. Mark and Matt have since nicknamed it the “talking part” as if it were a conversation between their instruments. We consider the outro or, “C”, of Wilt to be the most difficult part to play due to its odd meter changes and phrasing. We remember one day, it took almost the entire rehearsal practicing the outro; honing in on our counting skills, and developing the band’s pocket.
Did your group handle the mixing and mastering portion of your track "Wilt"? Or did you leave this in the hands of another producer/engineer?
Our producer/engineer is actually our drummer, Nick, who took point on the recording, mixing, and mastering processes. He provided all of the recording equipment while our bassist, Matt, provided the studio space at his home.
Since "Wilt" is off of your sophomore EP, "Umunhum," how does the sound and feel of your track fit into the vibe of the overall project?
Wilt in the context of Umunhum serves as a sort of “peak track” for the EP regarding how “hard-hitting” and dramatic the tune is. When you listen to the entire tracklist top to bottom, think of it as if you were drawing a line that follows the movement of each tune, thus creating peaks and valleys. We consider Wilt to be the pinnacle of that line; bringing its aforementioned fierce musical expression to our sophomore project.
What do you want listeners to know about The Mountain Chimes and the music that you create?
We can’t really say for sure, it’s up to the listeners to interpret what we create. We’re just really close friends coming from different musical backgrounds and we love the idea that we each bring something different to the table to create The Mountain Chimes’ sound. At the end of the day, we just have fun jamming out and we hope that all listeners familiar and new alike share the same joy listening as we do playing.