Release Date: Nov 7, 2011
Record label: Captured Tracks
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock, Indie Rock, Lo-Fi, New Wave/Post-Punk Revival
It's difficult to envisage many current artists existing at another time or place, such is the consumer-driven world of music so focused on 'now'. San Francisco ensemble The Soft Moon are a welcome, adverse reaction to the accepted norm. In proferring such a diverse and all-encompassing yet challenging range of styles and sounds, they could quite easily have emerged at any given point between 1978 and the present day.
Luis Vasquez works alone, and it shows. Excluding live performances, the San Francisco musician sets and triggers every sound associated with the Soft Moon, drawing from the coldest, most metallic zeniths of post-punk and industrial rock. He builds isolation out of isolation, almost to the point that he's entirely removed as a presence; when he sings, he's less a personality than an instrument in the mix, hissing and howling like busted pipes in an abandoned factory.
Luis Vasquez already seemed pretty comfortable with the dark side of his music on the Soft Moon's self-titled debut album, but he dives even deeper into it on the Total Decay EP. It may be only four songs long, but Vasquez makes up for its small size by packing even more ominous drones and evil-sounding synths into it. The title track lives up to its name, with alternately writhing and piercing electronic tones that bore through ears like maggots working their way through flesh, while “Repetition” pits death-rattle percussion against feral yelps and squealing synths that sound like they're being tweaked within an inch of their circuits.