We’ve always been a huge fan of space-related themes and music, and we’re having a sort of mini-week of those types of releases that bask in worlds beyond. For me as a listener, bands that soak in the stars end up creating art that helps me escape and travel into parts unknown, capturing my imagination with the themes and keeping it with the sounds they create.
Puerto Rican galactic dreamers Moths lock down that vibe early and often on their debut full-length “Space Force,” a record that’s also situated in doom and sludge. These six tracks (four full cuts and two smaller instrumentals) creep inside your dreams and guide you to the maw of the universe, their music pumping you full of energy and passion. The band—vocalist Damaris Rodríguez, guitarists Jonathan Miranda (leads) and Omar González (rhythm), bassist Weslie Negrón, drummer Daniel Figueroa—also adds elements of music from their home Commonwealth as well as progressive power that makes for a diverse and exciting record from a unit that holds a ton of promise.
“Space Cowboy’s Ballad” is an intro cut that’s heavily psychedelic and dreamy, washing through the senses and bleeding sky as we head into “Awake” that immediately launches a jerky pace that throttles. The pace plods as Rodríguez’s howls ring out, moving through rocky, yet murky terrain, the vocals then turning clean as the playing gets even proggier. “Is this the end? Is this all that is left?” Rodríguez wails as the melodies boil over, the fog continues to rise, and a laser beam of synth works through and burns everything to dust. “Awake” churns as the vocals soar into the clouds but also grinds with vicious growls, and the adventurous playing lifts the spirit of this song noticeably. Growls lace as the keys zip, and the guitar work picks up and makes your blood race, a jazzy haze hangs over, and energy pulses and fades.
“Unbound” lands early punches as the organs give a vintage feel, moody guitars swallow, and the riffs carve their way into stone. Rodríguez takes command again, coming off breathier and alluring, and then the playing tears open and bleeds. The adrenaline boost takes you for a ride, and the cosmic gust that bursts at the end leaves its mark among the stars. “There’s No Place Like Space” has a Southern rock glide and static jolts, the leads burning, disappearing into smoke, and that leads us to closing title track where the guitars blast into the stratosphere. Keys roll in as the pace is hyperactive, the singing driving and speeding along, melodic flushes suddenly turning grisly. The mood darkens as the guitars pick up speed, Rodríguez’s growls crush your chest, and the keys slur and drip into another dimension.
Moths are a true revelation, a band that certainly belongs and reigns in the metallic world but brings much more to the table. “Space Force” is an impressive debut that certainly gives a wide variety of tastes but also doesn’t do too much, letting you immerse yourself in their intergalactic energy. This is really a fun record, something that takes you on a journey to undiscovered worlds, removing you from the chaos that surrounds us all just for a little bit.
For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/MOTHSPR/
To buy the album, go here: https://mothspr.bandcamp.com/album/space-force