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Space Mountain - "Big Sky" | Album Review

by Charles Hoyt (@charlie_ben_h)

Cole Kinsler has been making music under the name Space Mountain since 2013, but I discovered his music just recently; I heard the album Big Sky because a friend of mine had recommended it to me. The songs on this record are at times folky and at others more heavy hitting. Some of the tracks on Big Sky remind me of moments off of LVL UP’s 2014 album, Hoodwink’d because of Kinsler’s low voice and guitar playing. This is especially true on tracks like “Faded Blue,” and “Supplication” due to Kinsler’s vocal intonation. Space Mountain’s Big Sky is an album that I really enjoy listening to both because of the variety of the songs, and because it is the exact length of the trip from my house to school.

There are no songs on Space Mountain’s Big Sky that I would get rid of, every track on this album fits perfectly with the rest. The album brings about thoughts similar to paintings of the Romantic period -- I say this because they utilize the thematic vastness of nature to discover the so sought point of it all. The lyric, “Rivers grow day by day/ Why make friends in a set place, if only to say goodbye/ I fell asleep on lilies and float through Berkshire skies” from the opening track “Big Sky” really brings those feelings to life. Beyond thoughts about how large the natural world is, there are points on the album where the lyrics are difficult to make out, possibly suggesting the ambiguity of everything. To boot, Big Sky uses these themes of largeness to elucidate how Kinsler feels so small.

My favorite songs on this album are “Never Lonely,” “Faded Blue,” and the closing track “Nowadays.” “Never Lonely” features vocals from Ava Trilling (Forth Wanderers). This was the first Space Mountain song that I heard; I instantly loved the lyrics and the vocal harmonies on the chorus. It is easily becoming one of my favorite songs of the year. “Faded Blue” is another song that shows off Kinsler’s songwriting talent. I am a large fan of the instrumentation on this song because it retains lo-fi sentiments, but also shows that Kinsler knows how to put together a good rock song. The song “Nowadays” is a good closer to this album because it starts off on the quieter side, but grows in an exciting crescendo that brings the record to a thrilling finish. This song perfectly sums up the entirety of the album, as it has wonderful lyrics, and showcases interesting dynamics. Big Sky is a lovely record that is perfect for the fall. It has a warm quality that makes you feel good.