Music Review: Moon Pigeon: Self-titled EP
Space travel or aviation phenomena aside, Miami’s Moon Pigeon eschews the nomenclature’s ready-made cryptic allusion for a well-versed and thoroughly studied ’90s sound. There’s a lot proving here that hindsight is 20/20. For the members of the quartet, all veterans of South Florida’s music scene, this is a project that could only have evolved if they were of a certain age and of a certain musical proclivity.
We are far removed enough nowadays to look back on the decade with a different set of glasses on, and though the musical output of that era is clogged with an astronomic tonnage of garbage, we are also afforded the luxury of fully investigating the hidden gems at our leisure. Moon Pigeon has, and their sound, likable now and for sure stylistically in place were it to be dropped without announcement circa ’96, is a distilling of such knowledge.
But this is neither parody nor homage; it’s taking existing talent and letting it be influenced in a controlled environment. To my knowledge, Moon Pigeon has thus far been strictly a studio project for vocalist/guitarist Mike Hernandez (ex-Wallop), guitarist Oscar Rodriguez (ex-Black Line Grind), bassist Gaston de la Vega (Hit Play!, ex-The Stop Motion) and drummer Brandon Leidel (Jorges), and one can see that they’ve operated with zero rush, nor have they been defined by guidelines.
This is a product of comradeship and chemistry. It could be fun to see exactly what the individual influences are per member, but this five-song EP stands as a perfect amalgam of styles. There’s something progressive that skirts into shoegaze but has the meaty backbone of rock and roll. There’s loft here too, and loft is good, especially when it works to elevate vocals and guitars. I’m a sucker for levels and I hate when elements compete for attention and affection. That doesn’t happen here; everything is refreshingly crisp and discerned.
That doesn’t mean that they don’t bring oomph and bomp with the appropriate execution and effects when needed. That’s the best part of this being the result of a studio project; it can be tinkered with, though the downside can be that it can also be tinkered with beyond the realm of necessity. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen here. These five songs are enjoyable as they stand, with the airy “Chronora” and the surreptitiously droning alt gem, “Parallels,” locking my focus.
[A little fun fact: One of the songs on this EP was mixed by Failure’s Ken Andrews after the EP was pressed. That’s some ’90s royalty for you].
As an EP, this is a perfect calling card should these guys choose to forge on and tackle a full-length, or heck, maybe even play live. Also, with many ’90s outfits of note making the touring rounds again, I can see them in a support capacity at the national level. You can make purchase inquiries for this disc here.
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