The Luna Moth – Common Denominator Of The Universe
Abandoned Love Records (2018)
By Sean Jewell
Band photo by Brian Humrichhauser
There is a cadence to The Luna Moth’s new album, a determination that their previous records did not have. The Luna Moth has always been a system of clangorous, instrumental, noise built around steady drone; experiments and improvisations, grinding up against conventional meters, with drums, bass and guitar, but this record is a cut above anything they’ve done in terms of style and fidelity.
You’ll still recognize their patient, meditative songs. It’s five minutes of steady low end rhythms on “Paean” before a guitar breaks into any riff, and at six minutes a moment of silence is destroyed by heavy buzz saw electric that carries you into a destructive coda. It’s an energizing, invigorating opener.
On “Underwater Sounds” the relentless clap of snare inundates you into The Luna Moth’s program. You get to experience the ebb and flow of guitar ideas around a trap kit rhythm. A bass solo surfaces at the bridge and instigates a babel of noise. It feels like The Luna Moth’s skills as a band have congealed at a time of tumult.
Common Denominator Of The Universe has no lyrics, but seems to describe a common nihilistic rancor, or serve as a cathartic release. The technical aspects of the album’s sound also make it superb. Recorded at Jack Straw Cultural Center, and mastered by audio wizard and “underwater acoustician” Alan Jones at Laminal Audio.
Despite being “weird drone-y rock music” as guitarist Levi Fuller put it to me, and being true to the stoned/droned genre sound, Common Denominator does anything but drone on. “Flatline Of The Bees” sounds like a swarm of airplane engines roaring through your ears in discord, and every second of it’s eleven minute run time is a cacophonous thrill, while “Left Hand Path” is some of the most exciting music we’ll hear come out of Seattle all year. – (7/10)