REVIEW: Mount Pleasant's Moses crosses multiple genres on debut LP


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mosesWith a fusion of folk-inspired indie rock and other rock genres, the Mount Pleasant band Moses comes at music from many different angles.

The proof can be see in the release of their debut album, "Gush."

What was once a seven-piece acoustic outfit has transformed in an all-electric quintet. The original seven formed the band out of a Central Michigan University residence hall and played shows not only in Mount Pleasant, but around the state.

The band members consist of singer and guitarist Nathan Zinzi and John Schaeffer, both from St. Clair Shores. These two are accompanied by Milford CMU graduate Carrie Pitzer on bass and guitarist Tim Barrett, from Novi.

Live concert highlights "Huron" and "Croatoan," which are complete with catchy hooks.

The vocable "ah-ha"s throughout "Huron," recorded with ambiance and the live crowd in mind, will stay in your head for days.

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The guitars driving the signature melody are accompanied by Schaeffer's smooth and driving drum patterns and a crunchy rhythm guitar, while Pitzer's vocals provide chill-inducing feeling, especially the line "When did we, when did we become what we are?" This line is delivered with a great conviction and energy and is definitely a stand out track on this LP.

The track "Croatoan" uses guitar to bring about the signature melody. This time around, though, the band delves into Mars Volta or even Pink Floyd territory.

Filled with energy and power, the vocal hook, "Our sorrow grows, made out of useless bones" mixed with great dual, melody-trading guitars makes for an interesting song, instrumentally, but also gives the song a cathartic feel.

Some of these songs stretch back to the band's seven-member early days, and as such, feel like they were recorded with those members in mind.

Consequently, some of the tracks feel a bit over-produced and have a few too many musical layers to them.

The opening tom-heavy drumming by Schaffer would have worked out just fine with at least one less guitar in the mix. The reverb-drenched, pulsating guitar in the middle of the mix probably could have been deleted without consequence to the rest of the song.

The backward guitar effect, the synth, or the extra guitar on the track, "Huron" could have been eliminated, as well.

The same over-production is all over the final track "Sequins," with extra layers of spacey guitars, vocals and other elements occupying the sound territory.

I love that the band is experimenting with its songs, both with the people making them and the actual song structures themselves, but this record has a little too much going on.

The hooks alone on some of the songs carry them into memorable territory, but not all of the songs on the album offer this.

Hopefully next time around, the band will produce a better musical balance.

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars



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