Black Moth Super Rainbow | Cobra Juicy (s/r)

CD black-mothIt seems like the perfect song for the drive home after a long night out—or, better yet, the walk home.

 

The first time I heard Black Moth Super Rainbow was in 2007. The album was Dandelion Gum, which had just come out. I had a friend who was obsessed with the record, but at first I couldn’t stand it. I have never been one for too much synthesizer use in music, but over time, the record would grow on me. Within a couple of months, I began to really enjoy the album, and from there picked up the back catalog, and even front man Tom Fec’s solo record released under the pseudonym Tobacco, which came out the next year.

Black Moth Super Rainbow makes it into my perennial playlist from time to time, but I wouldn’t say I have spent that much time listening to them. I heard about the Kickstarter campaign to make this record not too long ago, and given the chance, I knew I wanted to review it.

Cobra Juicy is not a groundbreaking album. It is immediately recognizable as BMSR and doesn’t challenge what one would know to be true about the group. Vocals are still run through a vocoder, buried in electric layers of pure chill back beats. More than anything, the record illustrates that the sound Fec has spent so many years developing is really coming into its own, and beginning to develop a bit further.

Like I said, the record doesn’t stray much from what you would expect from a BMSR record, but there are a few tracks that stand out by adding to the familiar composition. On “I Think I’m Evil,” Fec adds distortion, quite a bit of it. This might not sound like that much of a change, but it gives a whole new attitude to the overall sound. It is grittier, meaner, and seems to fit with the flow of the album.

On the other hand, you have tracks like “Spray Paint,” which is unusually slow and seemingly quiet. This also shows a bit of a change from the records of the past. “Spray Paint” seems like the perfect song for the drive home after a long night out—or, better yet, the walk home. The sound is found in a few places on the record.

By far, my overall favorite track is “Hairspray Heart.” Another sort of down-tempo song, it also has a sort of harder edge to it, not necessarily in the sound, but the vocals. Fec repeats, “Like a fucking diamond” over and over, which really brings the track to life. I can’t necessarily put my finger on exactly what it is that makes me love this track so much, but I do.

And that is the overall feel of this album to me: I really enjoy it, but I am not sure why. It has its high points and low points, but maintains to keep the lows from being too low. B+ | Alex Hodschayan

RIYL: Tobacco, Xiu Xiu, Caribou

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply