Crafted specifically to be released during the heart of winter, Moon Duo’s latest disc Occult Architecture Vol. 1 represents the band’s darkness in terms of the Yin of the Chinese Yin and Yang theory. This dual album concept arose during the album’s recording and mixing process and guitarist Ripley Johnson credits the inspiration to the power of “the changing of the seasons in the Northwest, the physical and psychic impact it has on you.” While the album’s dark, wintry concept is apparent in song titles alone (“The Death Set” and “Cold Fear” open the record after all), the record’s seductive, steely sound has a cold bite to it not unlike the iciest of winds.
Such coldness perhaps comes from the record’s otherworldly sound and feel at points. “Cross-Town Fade” is a buzzing, futuristic rocker while “Cult of Moloch” is a whirring cybernetic hymn. “Creepin’” exudes passion and danger with it’s distorted strut and breathy vocals that shimmer and spark. As the album draws to a close, the haunting goth pop of “Will of the Devil” fades into a static void that gives way to the arctic landscape that opens “White Rose.” Not unlike the first flowers of spring, however, a kinetic snare sprouts up from under the cold ground and the song quickly whisks the listener away on a sonic journey towards Occult Architecture Vol. 2 and the brighter side of Moon Duo.
Moon Duo’s Occult Architecture Vol. 1 drops February 3 on Sacred Bones Records and is available to pre-order now. You can follow Moon Duo on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, SoundCloud, Bandcamp, and on their website at www.moonduo.org.