What do you get when you combine three high school buddies with great musical talent and an ear for nuance? You get The Sun And the Moon’s ten-track indie rock album The Rock And the River. You’ll discover very soon into the first song that while the influences from bands such as the Beatles are very clear, the music is very much unique in composition and overall sound.
“I Had A Dream” is a fun, catchy song that introduces a harmonized vocal effect that plays a large part in the remainder of the album. But whereas the preceding song focuses more on the guitars to carry the beat, “Geneva” has the opposite effect, starting with and riding on a fantastic bass line. Halfway through, it morphs into a smooth jazz type song.
Like the opening song, “Ink On The Page” sounds a bit more pop-inspired. The harmonies remind me of the more mature sound the Backstreet Boys evolved into. The piano sounds beautiful here.
Songs like the introspectively alternative “Never Come Down” and the lower toned “Timeless” feature well-played electric guitar solos that are both unexpected but perfectly placed nonetheless. The latter song also has more raw, fierce vocals.
“Carry My Song” makes use of the dual vocals like in the opening song, an effect I see works incredibly well. This one is also very catchy and, with the plucky notes, is a head mover.
“Pathetic Notions” is the most heartfelt song on the album, without sacrificing energy. It sounds somewhat scattered yet cohesive at the same time, layering the steadily strumming guitar with rhythmic bass and complementary high and low vocals.
The final song “High Over The Moon” is an elevating experience with galloping drums and crashing cymbals and a violin part that carries the song along. The peak of the song, highly emotional chants of “goodbye!” solidify the impending end of the album, with the music melting away into a soothing and gentle finish.
This was a fun collection of well-thought out and written songs, and though the techniques and instruments are very familiar, the overall effect and album sounds refreshing and different. It’s nice to hear a band that takes inspiration and channels it into the music, an element that really gives this album an edge and makes it all the more intriguing.
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