The Mountain Firework Company
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The Mountain Firework Company

Brighton, England, United Kingdom | INDIE

Brighton, England, United Kingdom | INDIE
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The Mountain Firework Company [MFC] are a five piece acoustic roots band based in Brighton. They employ the classic bluegrass instrumentation of banjo, double bass, guitar, violin and mandolin [together with drums]. Their lead singer, songwriter, banjo player and guitarist is Irishman Gareth McGahan, whose songs sound both comtemporary yet traditional. MFC have been compared to The Pogues [presumably because they have a singer with an Irish accent and feature a banjo] but such comparisons are wholly inaccurate. Unlike The Pogues, MFC's music is rooted in the bluegrass tradition, with added elements of folk and country music.

MFC are blessed with fine musicians. As well as guitar and banjo maestro Gareth McGahan, they also feature the renowned fiddle/mandolin player Mike Simmonds, as well as Simon Russell [double bass], Ewan Wallace [guitar] and Grant Allardyce [drums].

The Lonesome Losing Blues is MFC's third album and very good it is too. It gets off to a fine start with Creeping Vine, which clearly demonstrates the band's attributes- fine songwriting and excellent playing, especially in the banjo and fiddle departments. Whilst the sound is definitely bluegrass influenced, it has an interesting twist as Gareth [naturally] sings with an Irish accent. The album contains both light and shade. There are several jaunty, catchy numbers [ eg. Creeping Vine, Daylight Robbery and Low] but there are also some more mournful, plaintive songs, such as the title track and Poor Girl.

Particularly poignant is the track Tonight, which at over 6 minutes, is the longest track. It begins with a beautiful guitar/fiddle intro which leads into a song of loss and regret [ In my dreams I get to hold you once more, there are no sad songs to haunt me] - lovely stuff.

This is a most enjoyable album, well played, written and sung. If contemporary bluegrass laced with folk is your cup of tea, you will lap this up. - fatea


The Mountain Firework Company [MFC] are a five piece acoustic roots band based in Brighton. They employ the classic bluegrass instrumentation of banjo, double bass, guitar, violin and mandolin [together with drums]. Their lead singer, songwriter, banjo player and guitarist is Irishman Gareth McGahan, whose songs sound both comtemporary yet traditional. MFC have been compared to The Pogues [presumably because they have a singer with an Irish accent and feature a banjo] but such comparisons are wholly inaccurate. Unlike The Pogues, MFC's music is rooted in the bluegrass tradition, with added elements of folk and country music.

MFC are blessed with fine musicians. As well as guitar and banjo maestro Gareth McGahan, they also feature the renowned fiddle/mandolin player Mike Simmonds, as well as Simon Russell [double bass], Ewan Wallace [guitar] and Grant Allardyce [drums].

The Lonesome Losing Blues is MFC's third album and very good it is too. It gets off to a fine start with Creeping Vine, which clearly demonstrates the band's attributes- fine songwriting and excellent playing, especially in the banjo and fiddle departments. Whilst the sound is definitely bluegrass influenced, it has an interesting twist as Gareth [naturally] sings with an Irish accent. The album contains both light and shade. There are several jaunty, catchy numbers [ eg. Creeping Vine, Daylight Robbery and Low] but there are also some more mournful, plaintive songs, such as the title track and Poor Girl.

Particularly poignant is the track Tonight, which at over 6 minutes, is the longest track. It begins with a beautiful guitar/fiddle intro which leads into a song of loss and regret [ In my dreams I get to hold you once more, there are no sad songs to haunt me] - lovely stuff.

This is a most enjoyable album, well played, written and sung. If contemporary bluegrass laced with folk is your cup of tea, you will lap this up. - fatea


Here’s an album that has sat far too long in the Beat Surrender to-do box and one that would have certainly finished up in the end of year best of lists posted during December if I’d got to it sooner.

The Lonesome Losing Blues is the third release from Brighton based five-piece The Mountain Firework Company, all the original tracks on the album were written by frontman Gareth McGahan who also plays banjo and guitar, there’s one ‘trad’ recording Poor Girl which is an interpretation of two traditional tunes Poor Man Blues and Vestapol. Though the music is built on the solid traditions of American mountain music McGahan’s makes no attempt to mask the gaelic overtones in his voice that give away his country of birth, the Belfast born frontman’s voice though blends perfectly with the excellent musicianship and vocal support afforded by the remaining band members in a classic Americana blend of bluegrass / folk and country, the full band line-up is completed by Grant Allardyce (drums), Simon C. Russell (double-bass), Ewan Wallace (guitar) and Michael Simmonds (fiddle, mandolin).

Mixed and mastered by Dan Swift (Snow Patrol, Kasabian, Art Brut) the albumwas recorded over a five day period ‘live’ to tape at the Ironworks Studio in Brighton. There’s much to enjoy on this release that’s a perfect example of classy Brit Americana, downloads are fine for convenience but there’s nothing like ‘owning’ the physical product and the CD comes in a smart gatefold design with a full lyric booklet – you can get yours - beat surrender


Here’s an album that has sat far too long in the Beat Surrender to-do box and one that would have certainly finished up in the end of year best of lists posted during December if I’d got to it sooner.

The Lonesome Losing Blues is the third release from Brighton based five-piece The Mountain Firework Company, all the original tracks on the album were written by frontman Gareth McGahan who also plays banjo and guitar, there’s one ‘trad’ recording Poor Girl which is an interpretation of two traditional tunes Poor Man Blues and Vestapol. Though the music is built on the solid traditions of American mountain music McGahan’s makes no attempt to mask the gaelic overtones in his voice that give away his country of birth, the Belfast born frontman’s voice though blends perfectly with the excellent musicianship and vocal support afforded by the remaining band members in a classic Americana blend of bluegrass / folk and country, the full band line-up is completed by Grant Allardyce (drums), Simon C. Russell (double-bass), Ewan Wallace (guitar) and Michael Simmonds (fiddle, mandolin).

Mixed and mastered by Dan Swift (Snow Patrol, Kasabian, Art Brut) the albumwas recorded over a five day period ‘live’ to tape at the Ironworks Studio in Brighton. There’s much to enjoy on this release that’s a perfect example of classy Brit Americana, downloads are fine for convenience but there’s nothing like ‘owning’ the physical product and the CD comes in a smart gatefold design with a full lyric booklet – you can get yours - beat surrender


The Mountain Firework Company hails from Brighton – and this is their third album release. On this evidence, I’m surprised not to have come across them before, for theirs is a quite special brand of what might best be described as Americana, which is most persuasively, and (perhaps unexpectedly) effectively delivered in band songwriter Gareth McGahan’s distinctive Belfast accent. His delivery exactly mirrors his heartfelt writing style, and embodies elements of both traditional and contemporary expressiveness. Gareth’s reliable melody lines are given equally reliable support from various permutations of the standard bluegrass outfit’s complement, with some solid harmony work from fellow band-members Mike Simmonds (fiddle/mandolin), Simon Russell (double bass), Ewan Wallace (guitar) and Grant Allardyce (drums). The MFC’s trademark combination of dynamic drive and reflective power is best demonstrated on cuts like the opener Creeping Vine, the rockabilly-inflected Daylight Robbery and the title number, while Lower Me, Poor Girl and (especially) the closer Tonight all show the more tender, poignant and lyrical side to the band’s music. Yes, I can hear why the band will have gone down a storm at Glastonbury, but their studio presence is also very keen. The chunky digipack sports a veritable kaleidoscope of photographic montages, so it’s good to find full lyrics and credits presented in the enclosed slim booklet. - Folk and roots


The Lonesome Losing Blues is the first release from Brighton-based The Mountain Firework Company in four years since their critically acclaimed 2008 release Samurai. You may ask what they have been up to in the intervening period – well, they have been delighting audiences throughout the country with their energetic, almost incendiary live show. They really seem to pack a punch with their full-on rocking acoustic bluegrassy folk. Double bass, guitar, fiddle, mandolin and percussion crowd around Belfast-born Gareth MaGahan’s yearning, lamenting and soulful vocals. They record “as live” which gives an immediacy and even a vibrancy to the recording. Dan Swift’s production (Snow Patrol, Kasabian) brings a fullness and roundness to the sound which highlights the musical talents on offer. The music gives a nod to modern popular folk but digs it’s heels in with a refreshing display of honesty and authenticity. These guys are in it for the music – not the fame.

This album, as it’s name would suggest, sees the band in a slightly more reflective mood. They seem troubled, and in some cases angry and this translates into some wonderfully cocky performances such as that on the track, Daylight Robbery. In other places there is a sense of sorrow which creates a mournful quietness and soothing quality to the songs. The tempo fluctuates as the album progresses – there are the traditional Mountain Firework Co bluegrass stompers in here to keep the hard-core fans happy.

The album’s opener Creeping Vine is an inconspicuous and infectious song, driven by double bass and banjo. “You’ve been growin’ on my mind just like a creeping vine”, sings MaGahan. The song does exactly that – you will be singing this when you wake up in the morning as you rub the sleep from your eyes. However, this is no lullaby – rather it’s a dark tale of poisonous romantic obsession which sets a sorrowful and intriguing tone for the rest of the album.

The story telling on Lonesome Losing Blues is masterful and well-crafted. A song about an innocent man being hanged for a murder that he did not commit, songs of love, heartbreak, regret and fury – they’re all here, and all executed with great passion. The sad songs on here are the most alluring. Birdsong is a desperate cry for one more chance to hear the birds sing, one more taste of wine, one more kiss. The sorrow and yearning of a man approaching his demise is beautifully drawn out in this song. Lower Me is another tear-jerker performed with emotion and grace. It is a song sung from beyond the grave to a love standing at the graveside. The soft vocals from MaGahan and whispered backing vocals from the rest of the band create a ghostly and almost spine-tingling atmosphere. “Though my arms lie cold and I can no longer hold you through the wind, I’ll blow you a kiss so you’ll know…” – one day they will be reunited. This is the softest and most charming point on the album.

The title track can be summed up in the first line of the chorus – “Unrequieted, unrequired, unsatisfied, undesired, the lonesome losing blues are all that I know”. This is a great country blues outing – not self-pitying but definitely blue.

While there is, let’s face it, quite a lot of misery on this album it is brought to the table in many different styles and in places, entirely tongue-in-cheek. Daylight Robbery is a prime example where the tempo picks up and the bluegrass kicks in. McGahan’s humour really shines through as he plays a character demanding, like a highwayman, for his love to hand over her heart and soul. “I want it rough, I just can’t get enough” he spits in this smash and grab of a bluegrass stomper. This will easily slot into their energetic live set.

The rhythm stays upbeat on Gold as we head into science fiction territory in a song which sees the protagonist of the story is being drawn to the sky – a chariot of fire, shining metal eyes. Far-fetched stuff but this five minute fable is delivered with a sincerity which wonderfully describes the lead character’s paranoia brought on by some terrible ghost riders in the sky. The chorus of backing vocals lend a country edge to the song as it soars across the dark skies and echoes into the distance. Great stuff!

Finally, the album returns to a more earthly note with the soft lamentation Tonight. A dream-like, ethereal introduction makes way for a plodding love song sung out of desire. “Tonight, I’ve got your so sweet body to hold, at least I might, in my dreams”. A song of unrequieted love or a love lost. Either way, this is a soothing and emotional end to the piece which begs the listener to hit the play button again and go right back to the start.

The Lonesome Losing Blues is an album which displays a softer side to the Mountain Firework Company. It is an album which brings some gravity to their catalogue without ever taking itself too seriously. McGahan’s lyrics are wonderfully crafted and the tunes flow almost effortlessly around and through them. - Folk radio UK


The Lonesome Losing Blues is the first release from Brighton-based The Mountain Firework Company in four years since their critically acclaimed 2008 release Samurai. You may ask what they have been up to in the intervening period – well, they have been delighting audiences throughout the country with their energetic, almost incendiary live show. They really seem to pack a punch with their full-on rocking acoustic bluegrassy folk. Double bass, guitar, fiddle, mandolin and percussion crowd around Belfast-born Gareth MaGahan’s yearning, lamenting and soulful vocals. They record “as live” which gives an immediacy and even a vibrancy to the recording. Dan Swift’s production (Snow Patrol, Kasabian) brings a fullness and roundness to the sound which highlights the musical talents on offer. The music gives a nod to modern popular folk but digs it’s heels in with a refreshing display of honesty and authenticity. These guys are in it for the music – not the fame.

This album, as it’s name would suggest, sees the band in a slightly more reflective mood. They seem troubled, and in some cases angry and this translates into some wonderfully cocky performances such as that on the track, Daylight Robbery. In other places there is a sense of sorrow which creates a mournful quietness and soothing quality to the songs. The tempo fluctuates as the album progresses – there are the traditional Mountain Firework Co bluegrass stompers in here to keep the hard-core fans happy.

The album’s opener Creeping Vine is an inconspicuous and infectious song, driven by double bass and banjo. “You’ve been growin’ on my mind just like a creeping vine”, sings MaGahan. The song does exactly that – you will be singing this when you wake up in the morning as you rub the sleep from your eyes. However, this is no lullaby – rather it’s a dark tale of poisonous romantic obsession which sets a sorrowful and intriguing tone for the rest of the album.

The story telling on Lonesome Losing Blues is masterful and well-crafted. A song about an innocent man being hanged for a murder that he did not commit, songs of love, heartbreak, regret and fury – they’re all here, and all executed with great passion. The sad songs on here are the most alluring. Birdsong is a desperate cry for one more chance to hear the birds sing, one more taste of wine, one more kiss. The sorrow and yearning of a man approaching his demise is beautifully drawn out in this song. Lower Me is another tear-jerker performed with emotion and grace. It is a song sung from beyond the grave to a love standing at the graveside. The soft vocals from MaGahan and whispered backing vocals from the rest of the band create a ghostly and almost spine-tingling atmosphere. “Though my arms lie cold and I can no longer hold you through the wind, I’ll blow you a kiss so you’ll know…” – one day they will be reunited. This is the softest and most charming point on the album.

The title track can be summed up in the first line of the chorus – “Unrequieted, unrequired, unsatisfied, undesired, the lonesome losing blues are all that I know”. This is a great country blues outing – not self-pitying but definitely blue.

While there is, let’s face it, quite a lot of misery on this album it is brought to the table in many different styles and in places, entirely tongue-in-cheek. Daylight Robbery is a prime example where the tempo picks up and the bluegrass kicks in. McGahan’s humour really shines through as he plays a character demanding, like a highwayman, for his love to hand over her heart and soul. “I want it rough, I just can’t get enough” he spits in this smash and grab of a bluegrass stomper. This will easily slot into their energetic live set.

The rhythm stays upbeat on Gold as we head into science fiction territory in a song which sees the protagonist of the story is being drawn to the sky – a chariot of fire, shining metal eyes. Far-fetched stuff but this five minute fable is delivered with a sincerity which wonderfully describes the lead character’s paranoia brought on by some terrible ghost riders in the sky. The chorus of backing vocals lend a country edge to the song as it soars across the dark skies and echoes into the distance. Great stuff!

Finally, the album returns to a more earthly note with the soft lamentation Tonight. A dream-like, ethereal introduction makes way for a plodding love song sung out of desire. “Tonight, I’ve got your so sweet body to hold, at least I might, in my dreams”. A song of unrequieted love or a love lost. Either way, this is a soothing and emotional end to the piece which begs the listener to hit the play button again and go right back to the start.

The Lonesome Losing Blues is an album which displays a softer side to the Mountain Firework Company. It is an album which brings some gravity to their catalogue without ever taking itself too seriously. McGahan’s lyrics are wonderfully crafted and the tunes flow almost effortlessly around and through them. - Folk radio UK


That year end top ten list is filling up nicely, and here’s another British contender that I’m sure will be on it. Brighton-based, The Mountain Firework Company do as fine a job as anyone (either side of the Atlantic) in taking that bluegrass sound and making it totally relevant for the early 21st century. Traditional instrumentation (banjo, fiddle, mandolin, guitars and the added beef from a drum kit) is combined with that dark thread of subject matter that runs direct from old Appalachian folk song right up to modern country noir.

The twist is that even as the splendidly mournful voice of Gareth McGahan sings of hangings at the crossroads, or of his body being lowered into the cold, dark ground, there remains no doubt that he is singing about experiences and states of mind that exist just as much today as they did in old Appalachia. The song about the hanging at the crossroads, for example, hinges on the point that the wrong man got hanged for a murder and the devil won’t come down and claim his soul, because he’s “on his way to play his tricks on the wicked hearts of men”. You only have to consider the case of the woman who attracted hysterical vilification for putting a cat in a wheelie bin to realise how a mob will still happily latch onto an appropriate victim to enjoy the thrill of righteous indignation.

As for McGahan’s love songs, there’s a desperate obsession in them that is unsettling. He’s laying his emotional vulnerability out for all to see, but there’s a dark sense that this emotion could easily flip over into something destructive. The desperation in the lyric to Daylight Robbery maybe gives you a flavour of this: “I want your eyes, that pretty face, I want your fists babe, give me all the rage…give back all the hate babe, give back what you took, I want it rough, I just can’t get enough”. The aching tenderness in his voice and the glints of dark humour suggest that nothing too bad will happen, but he’s certainly tapping into some dark undercurrents.

If the lyrical content is compelling, then the music these guys make matches that quality every step of the way. All four other band members (Grant Allardyce, Simon Russell, Mike Simmonds, Ewan Wallace) contribute warm harmonising vocals, and the beauty of their playing reaches sublime heights. When the banjo is in the foreground they sound very much like a bluegrass band but there are quietly beautiful instrumental passages where you realise that these guys are so good, they could probably play pretty much anything. Bluegrass usually focuses on speed and precision, but this band is prepared to slow things right down and to conjure something beautifully atmospheric from the interplay of their instruments. This is music of rich depth, incredibly rewarding to get into, and easily one of the best albums I’ve heard this year. - Flyin shoes review


That year end top ten list is filling up nicely, and here’s another British contender that I’m sure will be on it. Brighton-based, The Mountain Firework Company do as fine a job as anyone (either side of the Atlantic) in taking that bluegrass sound and making it totally relevant for the early 21st century. Traditional instrumentation (banjo, fiddle, mandolin, guitars and the added beef from a drum kit) is combined with that dark thread of subject matter that runs direct from old Appalachian folk song right up to modern country noir.

The twist is that even as the splendidly mournful voice of Gareth McGahan sings of hangings at the crossroads, or of his body being lowered into the cold, dark ground, there remains no doubt that he is singing about experiences and states of mind that exist just as much today as they did in old Appalachia. The song about the hanging at the crossroads, for example, hinges on the point that the wrong man got hanged for a murder and the devil won’t come down and claim his soul, because he’s “on his way to play his tricks on the wicked hearts of men”. You only have to consider the case of the woman who attracted hysterical vilification for putting a cat in a wheelie bin to realise how a mob will still happily latch onto an appropriate victim to enjoy the thrill of righteous indignation.

As for McGahan’s love songs, there’s a desperate obsession in them that is unsettling. He’s laying his emotional vulnerability out for all to see, but there’s a dark sense that this emotion could easily flip over into something destructive. The desperation in the lyric to Daylight Robbery maybe gives you a flavour of this: “I want your eyes, that pretty face, I want your fists babe, give me all the rage…give back all the hate babe, give back what you took, I want it rough, I just can’t get enough”. The aching tenderness in his voice and the glints of dark humour suggest that nothing too bad will happen, but he’s certainly tapping into some dark undercurrents.

If the lyrical content is compelling, then the music these guys make matches that quality every step of the way. All four other band members (Grant Allardyce, Simon Russell, Mike Simmonds, Ewan Wallace) contribute warm harmonising vocals, and the beauty of their playing reaches sublime heights. When the banjo is in the foreground they sound very much like a bluegrass band but there are quietly beautiful instrumental passages where you realise that these guys are so good, they could probably play pretty much anything. Bluegrass usually focuses on speed and precision, but this band is prepared to slow things right down and to conjure something beautifully atmospheric from the interplay of their instruments. This is music of rich depth, incredibly rewarding to get into, and easily one of the best albums I’ve heard this year. - Flyin shoes review


Irish Mountain Music for City Folk

This album arrived in a week when I received 22 new CD’S and has very nearly got lost in dusty a pile that is in danger of taking over my office.

Obviously I categorize albums as soon as they arrive and THE LONESOME LOSING BLUES kept getting pushed to one side, as it was apparently some kind of ‘modern take on Bluegrass music’ by a band from Brighton, England; so hardly hit my radar.

Well; that was a huge mistake on my behalf.

Yes, there are elements of Bluegrass and Mountain music here; but you must also add a twist of Celtic Folk, a soupçons of Bed-sit Singer-Songwriter angst and the insight of a man who has known love in all of its forms (good and bad) to get somewhere near what The Mountain Firework Company have produced on their third album.

Poor Girl must have taken several turns in the studio, as it has all the hallmarks of a Delta Blues in the songwriting but the atmospheric backing track is atmospheric nu-folk and Gareth McGahan’s vocal style is pure Irish Folk and it works exceptionally well.

Daylight Robberyis one of the cleverest Folk songs I've heard in years; with a story worthy of Richard Thompson but sounding like a less raucous Saw Doctors – you will have to hear it to know what I mean.

Probably my favourite track is the delightful Low which is a tale of a man with a bruised heart but the harmonies and enchanting banjo and fiddle interplay make it a lot less ordinary than it could have been.

The musicianship throughout the album is deceptively good; with subtle fiddle, mandolin and banjo solos enhancing every song they appear in and McGahan’s Irish lilt always stays on the right side of charming and never wanders into ‘fiddle-de-dee’ territory.

LONESOME LOSING BLUES ends with a bit of an opus called Tonight that opens with a pseudo-classical introduction and takes us on a laconic stroll on an imaginary lovers walk with the singer and the woman of his dreams.

Don’t make the same mistake I did; find this album as soon as possible and discover your next favourite band. - Maverick magazine / No Depression




Authentic bluegrass music from the south…(That’s Brighton, not the US)

This is the second album from Brighton based five piece band The Mountain Firework Company, and without that knowledge you could be forgiven after hearing this record for initially believing that you were listening to a long established southern US based bluegrass group. This is really authentic stuff and all from the pen of the group’s leader, Belfast raised Gareth McGahan who seems to have absorbed all the angst and pain required to write songs of lost love, longing, and tragedy, one song even involving a wrongful hanging for good measure.

The album, which was recorded, mixed and mastered by Dan Swift of Snow Patrol and Kasabian fame was recorded "live" over five days at the Ironworks Studio in Brighton and this approach has ensured that the group’s famed live energy shines through. From the lively opener "Creeping Vine" to the achingly beautiful closer "Tonight" the band’s outstanding musicianship impresses time and again. This is a well rounded album, put together with passion and care and well worth getting to know.
- Americana uk




Authentic bluegrass music from the south…(That’s Brighton, not the US)

This is the second album from Brighton based five piece band The Mountain Firework Company, and without that knowledge you could be forgiven after hearing this record for initially believing that you were listening to a long established southern US based bluegrass group. This is really authentic stuff and all from the pen of the group’s leader, Belfast raised Gareth McGahan who seems to have absorbed all the angst and pain required to write songs of lost love, longing, and tragedy, one song even involving a wrongful hanging for good measure.

The album, which was recorded, mixed and mastered by Dan Swift of Snow Patrol and Kasabian fame was recorded "live" over five days at the Ironworks Studio in Brighton and this approach has ensured that the group’s famed live energy shines through. From the lively opener "Creeping Vine" to the achingly beautiful closer "Tonight" the band’s outstanding musicianship impresses time and again. This is a well rounded album, put together with passion and care and well worth getting to know.
- Americana uk


Discography

A Rough Guide to Feeling Rough 2004

Samurai 2008

The Lonesome Losing Blues 2012

Photos

Bio


"a bitter sweet country cocktail... on the rocks "


The Mountain Firework Company are an acoustic 5 piece based in Brighton, England. They came together over heartache and wine to create what has been described as "gorgeous folk/alt country pop, with equal parts darkness and cheeky humour " and "alternative bluegrass with a dark treacle folk centre "


Simultaneously mournful and upbeat, The Mountain Firework Companys driving and melodic sound comes from an all acoustic string band line up of guitars, fiddle, banjo, mandolin, double bass and drums. Taking the traditional bluegrass line-up in new directions, they incorporate country, folk, bluegrass and general Americana within their sound. Whilst they are knowledgeable and respectful of those genres conventions, they refuse to be bound by them. They play all their own material, creating a unique sound that is both fresh and familiar. A sound, that in its own small way is a continuation of the folk process, where the music that left these islands long ago to eventually become what we loosely term Americana has returned and still continues to evolve.


Their laconic front man, Irishman Gareth McGahan, spearheads the band. His song writing, his gruff accented singing, and his finger style guitar and banjo playing are at the core of its sound. His song writing is by turns sad, dark, and witty. It stands with one foot firmly in the folk, country and blues traditions. He writes his songs for bruised hearts and minds, songs which some say sound both contemporary and traditional. When these songs are performed with vocal harmonies supplied by the remaining band members, every one of whom are exceptional players, the band bristles with energy and vitality.


It was the Sidewinder pub in Brighton that set the stage for The Mountain Firework Company. Gareth was the manager and he was intent on using the space upstairs to put a band together. As a landmark Pub in Brighton with a reputation for its music, it quickly attracted likeminded souls. The pieces fell together and soon the band was up and running.


At first they were an electric band, playing a mix of afro-funk and jazzy drum and bass, but this incarnation was short lived. Undeterred, Gareth went back to his roots as a folk blues fingerpicker. He gained a newfound confidence in his song writing and the band re emerged as the acoustic roots combo that is now The Mountain Firework Company. After a number of well-received local gigs they recorded their first album, the appropriately titled A ROUGH GUIDE TO FEELING ROUGH. Recorded above the pub, the album was released on line and introduced the band to a much wider audience, winning them many new fans.
Soon after that they were joined by renowned fiddle player Mike Simmonds (Alice Russell, Quantic ),and they released their critically acclaimed second album SAMURAI. By now they had earned themselves a reputation as one of the very best acoustic live acts in the Brighton area and gathered themselves a large and devoted fan base. They went on to perform sold out shows four years running for the Brighton fringe festival and have since played all over the UK. They have been delighting fans old and new in respected acoustic venues such as the Green Note and Cecil Sharpe house in London and at many festivals large and small, including Glastonbury.
For the next couple of years the band continued to develop creatively and grow in confidence, and by late 2011 it was high time to go back into the studio and record a third album. For this they enlisted the help of seasoned producer Dan Swift and booked themselves 5 days at the highly regarded Ironworks studios. The result is THE LONESOME LOSING BLUES. Just released in 2012 it marks the beginning of the next chapter in the story of a band who have great things ahead of them.

Band Members