The Soft Moon


Written by: BV on 26/04/2015 21:39:47

There will always be miserable teens, angst-y young adults and everything in between because feeling nihilistic, apathetic and downright miserable is just as big a part of life and the human condition as feeling joy, falling in love and finding yourself actually caring about something. As much as there will always be a place for darker emotions, there will therefore also always be a market for music reflecting such tendencies. The Soft Moon is clear evidence of just that. Formed in 2010, the one-man project founded by Luis Vasquez leans heavily on the post-punk stylings of Joy Division and the dark, ominous sounds of bands like The Cure, yet maintains a relatively modern sound that can best be identified as an updated version of the aforementioned sounds.

With “Deeper”, The Soft Moon’s newest effort, Vasquez has come a long way from the initially fuzzy, slightly amateurish first outings of the band – taking on a fully fledged, almost pristine production value along the way. “Black” is a perfect example of this, as the ominous synth-pop track has been produced with a chilling, almost razor-sharp production. You’re never really questioning what is actually in the soundscape as everything from the simple drumming, over the creepy synth and the eerie vocals are all clear as day – yet somehow, somewhere along the way, the track has still obtained some sort of foggy ambience to it that is, quite honestly, very fitting for the moods the track (and the album as a whole) seemingly tries to create.

It would seem as though “Deeper” is more of a complete construct of moods, rather than a set of songs couple together for a release. Instead of obvious hooks, Vasquez has seemingly tried to reproduce the ominous thoughts he has scribbled into lyrics and transform them into a hugely befitting soundscape. It has its clear advantages, but also major downsides to it along the way. An example could easily be found in “Far” which is the closest thing the album has to a catchy hook and an identifiable track. The up-tempo riff brings forth memories of just about any post-punk styled band you could ever imagine – from monoliths like Joy Division, to more recent conveyers of the style like Shiny Darkly. It’s familiar, but altogether unsurprising and slightly uninteresting for those who don’t listen to the genre on a regular basis, instead opting for occasional forays into this particular musical style.

Sadly I must admit to finding myself leaning predominantly towards the group of people who might not identify very well with the album as a whole. For all of its beautiful and pristine production and somewhat thorough, thought through songwriting, I just can’t seem to let myself go for long enough to fully delve into the darkness of the album. I’m certain others will appreciate the album far more than I ever could, but for those of us who cannot fully identify with the gloomy tendencies as a dominant, consistent theme of an album, it sadly falls short of genuinely broad appeal. In short, it could have been a fairly excellent album, yet it has more than its fair share of difficulties with reaching out to a broader audience as it becomes far too rooted in a very singular soundscape and feel.


Download: Feel, Far
For The Fans Of: Shiny Darkly, Suicide, Joy Division

Release date 01.04.2015
Captured Tracks

Related Items | How we score?
comments powered by Disqus


© Copyright MMXXI