The story of how Winter Mountain came to be and what happened after has been much told of late, so as you're busy and because the full tale can be found elsewhere, here's the condensed version: They met on a train and some quite famous people like them.
The pair were already known to this reviewer, prior to the release of Find, Follow their debut EP, as they opened for Cara Dillon at Bury Met a while back. Now, they're signed to the label owned by Dillon and husband Sam Lakeman, which is fortuitous, for when it comes to producing gentle, acoustic folkyness, Sam's your man.
The lot of a support act is not easy. The chance to play before a larger than usual crowd is welcome, but in many cases the audience applaud politely whilst wishing you'd bugger off and let the main act get on with it. However, Joseph Francis and Martyn Smith held their own and provided an added bonus to the evening, no mean feat given the calibre of the star turn.
Comparisons to Simon and Garfunkel are inevitable given the use of close harmony, but there are similarities in appearance too. There's a lanky chief vocalist in need of a good meal and a short arse with a guitar, whose abilities with that instrument will probably be overlooked.
Those two look like they need a girlfriend, commented one audience member. Presumably, she meant one each, but you never know.
As you'd expect from a Sam Lakeman production, Find, Follow is neatly put together. But that can only get you so far. Whether an un-showy duo like Winter Mountain fly or fail is down to the song writing.
Shed a Little Light is typical opening track material. Up-tempo, cheery and not too taxing, just the thing to ease you in. Sarah, the next offering has more substance though, with an echoey call and response type chorus that's reminiscent of late eighties Fleetwood Mac.
The best is saved 'til last. Whenever You Lay Your Head Down is a mellow, late night, Everly-esque number, with an understated acoustic guitar riff running through the verse. It captures perfectly, the feeling of wondering if that special person is thinking of you, the same way you are about them. If you have a sofa, a girl and a bottle of wine to hand, putting this on the CD player would be the smart move. Yes, that last sentence is written from the male perspective. Amend it to fit your circumstances.
An EP is but a snap shot. Time, and a full album or two, will determine if Winter Mountain can make the transition from likeable warm up act to headliners in their own right. The evidence so far, suggests that they can.