Friday, 3 May 2013

The Moons - Fables Of History

Album review by

On the off-chance that the artwork hasn't given it away, The Moons favour a 1960s sound, and one that has a default setting of mild psychedelia. Based in London, they originate from Northampton and The Midlands. Each of the quintet is a multi-instrumentalist, but the man who brings the bulk of the tunes to the table is Andy Crofts. It's unusual just which '60s inspirations they draw from, as it's not (seemingly omnipresent) garage or blues-rock and they don't aim to replicate The Beatles, although if you're making pop/rock record that borrows from that era, it's practically impossible for the Fab Four not to leave a mark of some kind.

You can play "spot the influence" throughout the album, and this is no slight on what they've made here, in fact you get the sense that it's kind of the whole point. The overriding sound of The Moons is British, but we'll come to that shortly, as they do pinch a few ideas from the soundtrack to US counter-culture, and at points they crossover. The ace 'Forever Came Today' can't be tagged to a particular place or even time; 'Double Vision Love' somehow mixes The Kinks and The Byrds with post-punk and makes it work; 'It's Taking Over' also doffs its cap to the next generation of guitar bands. The wonderful 'Something Soon' all goes a bit 'Forever Changes', only it sticks a brief 'Eight Miles High' guitar break in the middle, and you can't argue too much with that. You could maybe say that 'Lights Out' has echoes of Love to it as well.

Back to Britain: 'Be Not Me' could be any number of beat-groups, but from those couple of years later when they had to adapt to try and keep up with the pace; the jaunty pop of 'Revolutionary Lovers' almost breaks free and settles down in the early 70s with its MOR stomp, yet it's still a likable song. Naturally there's a hippyish ode to a girl called 'Jennifer' which is part Donovan, part Syd Barrett and part Beatles, but you should expect no less from an album like this and it's an incredibly sweet track. 'English Summer' (even from its title) tells us they've been listening to The Kinks again; they embrace the majestic pop of that era on the wonderful 'Can You See Me'. It's all be done before, but The Moons understand the music and do it incredibly well. Plus we've all eaten a bloody gorgeous piece of cake before and we'll all do that again, because it'll still be good. The Moons are a bit tasty like that.

The Moons' website

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