Independent Spotlight is a continuing series on Stewart’s blog. The series revolves around independent artists and bands sending their music to Brett to review. No band is promised a positive review, and all music is reviewed honestly in an effort to better independent music.
In this Independent Spotlight review, I’ll be taking a look at Moment, an artist on Mad-Hop records. His debut EP, ‘Yeah I See,’ drops for free digital download this month. Let’s delve a bit into Mad-Hop as a label to give some context to the music, and then onto ‘Yeah I See.’
Mad-Hop’s roots trace back to 2009, though they became an official label in 2012. The label boasts a wide variety of music focusing on genres such as electronic, experimental hip-hop, dubstep, and a host of other sounds. They define themselves as a label that is striving to become a creative platform for independent musicians who aren’t afraid to make music outside of the box. Does Moment live up to that mantra?
The first track on the EP, ‘First Step,’ introduces Moment with a powerful, eerie, and atmospheric piece. The production is uniquely appealing, covering the landscape with some elaborate sounds and effects. ‘First Step’ is a bold statement of experimentalism right off of the bat. ‘Beautiful’ follows, a grandiose electronic mix that harnesses a distinctive aura. ‘Beautiful’ is indeed beautiful, though it feels held back, as if Moment is waiting to break free and erupt. ‘Beautiful’ is timid in that regard.
‘Collective Minds’ continues Moment’s voyage through sound effect experimentation and alluring sound devices. At this point in the record, however, he is struggling to define himself as an individual artist. These mixes feel like cutting room floor takes off of a Thom Yorke project. ‘What’ follows, and it toys around with vocal effects in a particularly interesting method.
‘Three Moons’ seems to act as a transition piece of sorts, a short instrumental between two stronger, fully realized ideas. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it feels unnecessary on the record, as if it’s part of ‘Collective Minds’ that didn’t find its way onto the final cut. Fortunately, ‘Where Is My Lighter’ tops off the record afterward with a bang. The most poignant and intelligent track on the record closes it. ‘Where Is My Lighter’ is by far the best track of the six. It’s mystical and fantastical, which is refreshing after the previous track’s droning nature.
‘Yeah I See’ is a peculiar EP. It’s well produced, well executed, and well performed. There isn’t a bad song on it, and there’s a couple that are certainly notable. With that said, the sound doesn’t sound completely formed. Moment’s music is a temptress of sorts, darting in and out of beautiful noise with poise and elegance, yet never actually achieving its potential. I foresee the follow-up to this EP becoming much stronger as Moment’s musical identity becomes more realized.
Mad Hop's Music: https://soundcloud.com/mad-hop