Listening to New York’s What Moon Things it’s easy to believe they were conceived in a dark mouldy basement. In fact it’s hard to imagine them existing anywhere else for this is a band who sounds like they’re operating in society’s gutter amongst the meths swilling vagrants. Fortunately for us, this means some cracking “lumbering shoegaze” too.
From the opening trauma of the ‘The Vampire’ the vocalist already seem on the verge of cracking up while the band play a fuzzed up variation on slowcore; lurching towards an almost drunken finale. ‘The Astronaut’ puts all the elements into more coherent and hook-heavy form though, where the wails and murmurs convey crazed emotions as the band produce their finest off-kilter pop moment. Quality-wise, that song is accompanied by the dream pop-flavoured ‘Squirrel Girl’ whilst the chiming, infectious ‘Staring At The Radio’ builds from disarmingly pretty chiming post punk/new wave guitars into a gloriously intense finale.
Judging by the line “My brain’s full of holes” on the bleak finale ‘Sun, Where’s The Fire’, all three band members have earned a rest after half an hour of committed vocals, sludgy stoner riffs and clattering percussion. Yet the album is thrilling and visceral from beginning to end, which means What Moon Things have stumbled on to something special here.
The Walkmen, Six.By Seven, Menendez