The second volume of Moon Duo’s Occult Architecture focuses on the Yang to the first volume’s Yin, a bright side reflecting its dark side with dazzling luminescence. “New Dawn” is an apt title for the collection’s opening track’s rays of sunny psychedelia. Built upon a foundation of dreamy fuzz and reverb that will underscore much of the record, “New Dawn” sets the atmosphere as much as it changes it by transporting the listener to a divine space.
According to Ripley Johnson, during production Moon Duo referred to Occult Architecture Vol. 2 as “The Crystal Palace” to the “Fuzz Dungeon” of the previous volume and tracks like the lustrous instrumental “Mirror’s Edge” or the resplendent glam rock of “Sevens” make it clear why. Where Vol. 1 instilled fear and contemplated darkness, Vol. 2 inspires hope and conjures ethereal bliss with shimmering instrumentation and angelic vocals.
As with Occult Architecture Vol. 1, Moon Duo aren’t afraid of songs with lengthy running times. This serves the sprawling and adventurous “Lost in Light” well as it evokes some of the greatest science fiction of the last century by triumphantly explores a seemingly endless sonic galaxy. “The Crystal World” builds upon this in a more understated way, crafting a spiraling symphony of starlight and synthesizers to light the darkness.