Moon Duo, who are confusingly now a trio, return with their third full length studio album Shadows of the Sun after Mazes and Circles received critical acclaim. Shadows Of The Sun picks up from where Moon Duo left off and then expands into some new territory. This album is a lesson in just how much it is possible to get out of some drums, an electric organ, an electric guitar and some effects pedals.
In the same way that comedian Stewart Lee repeats himself through the point where it loses its comedic value but then continues and evolves until it becomes funny again, Moon Duo repeat the same riff throughout each song which can cause it to lose effect during the middle but it reliably comes good again at the end.
The band has always been experimental and their riffs are hard hitting. It is a style that requires your full attention, it may seem as though there isn’t much deviation from the first bar to the last but the more you listen to it the more you notice subtle twists and moments of flare, intricacy and layering.
From the first track “Wildling” there is a sense of modern progressive ideas whilst at the same time guiding you towards visions of the psychedelic seventies. The euphoric heights of Shadows Of The Sun comes in the form of tracks like “Free The Skull”, “Ice” and “Animal” which build upon and develop the opening sequence until it reaches a climactic ending.
Having previously relied on a drum machine the addition of an actually drummer has brought a subtle yet driving nature to the spine of each track. This makes it their best work to date, very similar to their previous work but more precise and slightly less indulgent.
Shadows Of The Sun is available now on iTunes through the splendid Sacred Bones Records.