Released the day before Halloween, the Soft Moon's Zeroes is the perfect soundtrack for anyone looking to flirt with their '80s UK-goth dark side. The Captured Tracks–issued sophomore record by the Bay Area post-punk trio wears the heavy makeup of period accents and retro production effects — so many masquerade elements, it might as well be a costume party.
Whether it's the hissy pulse of late-'70s proto-punk pioneers Suicide, the echo-y, woozy guitar sounds of early Cure, or the stylized accents of Joy Division's percussion, the gang's all here. "We're kindred spirits, living in the same world," says frontman Luis Vasquez, who previously toiled with psych/space-rockers the Lumerians. Rather than admit that Soft Moon's music is obsessed with their '80s black-booted brethren, Vasquez thinks of it as just a little harmless nostalgia. Goth is a style that works well for his frustrations expressing himself in his day-to-day life. "I'd rather let the guitar talk," says Vasquez, by phone. Zeroes' texture-heavy sound allows guitars and synth lines to divert the focus from lyrical narratives. Sometimes the vocals sound like singing, but for Vasquez, sometimes the vocals are just more instruments.
It messes with your mind. According to Vasquez, album opener "It Ends," which begins with heartbeats and heavy breathing, is an invitation to the listener to change their state of awareness. "That's me going out of my consciousness into my subconsciousness."
THE SOFT MOON + MAJICAL CLOUDZ + RIBS | T.T. The Bear's Place, 10 Brookline St, Cambridge | January 9 @ 8:30 pm :: 18+ :: $10 :: 617.492.0082 or ttthebears.com
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