Song Of The Day 6/23/2016: American Spring – “Sweet Mountain”
In the early '70s, after Brian began withdrawing from leadership of the Beach Boys, Marilyn and Diane reunited to form the duo Spring. They were rechristened American Spring after a British progressive rock band also named Spring threatened them with legal action before promptly breaking up themselves. American Spring's work sort of extended the lowish-fi, brooding work Brian was doing in his home studio, not to mention the Beach Boys' post-'60s fallout work like the sort of bummed-out Surf's Up album. The American Spring album contains a lot of covers, reined in by some studio darkness and the sisters' modest vocal approach. It works for their off-kilter version of "Tennessee Waltz," not so much from the strangely busy cover of "Superstar." But the Brian composition "Sweet Mountain" is almost perfect, swaddled in melancholy, fatigued emotion, partially French lyrics and almost as much emotional retreat as Nico Tribute Night. If there was ever such a thing as "California gothic," this is it.