Mt. Doubt is a solo project by Edinburgh based musician Leo Bargery and his debut album My Past Is A Quiet Beast is something rather special. Mixing introspective lyrics with large scale sounds, think a mix of Radiohead, Arcade Fire and The National, My Past Is A Quiet Beast is a really impressive and confident debut with much promise.
Opener Beast is a slow building, brooding affair, with the phrase "My past is a quiet beast" repeated throughout, building to a power ending that certainly sounds cathartic for Bargery. The next track Feathers is the opposite of Beast, all pop and melody and really quite brilliant. It's my stand out track from the album and one you'll certainly want to hear (listen below). Slump displays the darker side of Mt Doubt again, before Bend Sinister lets some light back in albeit in the dark yet optimistic way The National handle their lighter moments. It's been said many times already by those who've heard Mt. Doubt, but there is definitely something of the Matt Berninger in the way Bergary delivers his vocals and that's of course no bad thing at all.
Fans of this blog and the Almost Scottish Fiction releases will already be familiar with the excellent Bend which featured on the third e.p. (here) and the track works beautifully when heard in its album setting. Dancing Phantoms and I Break Spirit follow Bend and both are atmospheric slices of dark indie pop and they lead to the swirling, gripping Telmessos which, like many tracks here sounds like it would be comfortably at home in some pretty big venues. The influence of The National is again felt on another of the album's stand outs Soft Wrists, before we end on Asunder, a rousing, joyous finale to what has been a hugely enjoyable album.
Mt. Doubt play live at The Hug & Pint, Glasgow on Tuesday 4 August headlining the Scottish Fiction Presents... gig. Tickets are £5 and are available from www.hugandpint.com