The Luna Moth, "Underwater Sounds" (self-released)
Seattle trio the Luna Moth are one of those reliable instrumental rock groups one tends to take for granted. They play out and release records with some regularity, but have never accrued much buzz for their solid efforts. Some of you may recall that they were the catalysts for the short-lived but commendable Cumulus Festival, which strove to boost the city's burgeoning post-rock mini-movement in the late '00s. While the event faded out, the Luna Moth have kept plugging away, and this summer they released their best album to date, Common Denominator of the Universe.
The band—guitarist Mark Schlipper, bassist Levi Fuller, and drummer Dan Colavito—have added grandeur and depth to their heady post-rock compositions, harnessing a crushing majesty that nearly rivals that of Om and early Earth. As each song on Common Denominator of the Universe averages about 10 minutes, it requires a long attention span to appreciate the methodical, momentous movements occurring here. Because the Luna Moth eschew vocals, though, you're freer to focus on the swarming textures and subtly tumultuous atmospheres they conjure, liberated to imagine scenarios they might soundtrack rather than try to decipher lyrics. "Underwater Sounds" recalls the first album by Kranky recording artists Bowery Electric with its gradually swelling guitar jangle and bass ballast while being nudged along by Colavito's Quaaluded funk beats. The song patiently builds to a gargantuan stomp that teems with Schlipper and Fuller's Herculean power chords. Slow-motion catharsis is achieved.
The Luna Moth play the Blue Moon Tavern Friday, October 12, with Scriptures and Møtrik.