Moonlight Bride - Twin Lakes (self-release)

Since their stellar debut effort Myths released way back in the hazy October of '09, Moonlight Bride have remained fairly under the radar, working tirelessly on a plethora of follow-ups set to litter 2012. The buzz generated from Myths brought about a dedicated cult following, and that following is set to rapidly expand with the release of their first EP and first material in nearly three years, Twin Lakes.

Released Apr 9th, 2012 / By Larry Day
Moonlight Bride - Twin Lakes (self-release) 'Diego' kickstarts the EP, screeching into focus with wailing banshee guitars and distorted waves of foamy fuzz. The vocals of Justin Giles verge leap from between falsetto howls and a Molko-esque sneer, backed by chugging bass and muffled late eighties/early nineties backing vocals. More than just hints of The Smashing Pumpkins and Sonic Youth bleed through, providing a new slant on the tried-and-tested-to-death subgenre of noise-pop.

The major release from the album, 'Lemonade' is vastly poppier. Dulcet female tones peer from behind Giles' lethargic drawl, giving a new dimension to the otherwise standard rock set-up. Perpetual mangled chords revel in the background, pierced by duelling lead guitars and chunky vocal hooks. Seamlessly blending with next track 'Versinthe', the love affair with effects pedals becomes obvious, and the shoegazers within Moonlight Bride come out to play. My Bloody Valentine and The Jesus And Mary Chain have been cited as influences by the band, and here, it is evident. The walls of noise are far from claustrophobic however, as is the norm for the introverted genre- 'Versinthe' has an otherworldly, desolate feel. Cyclic bass and ethereal growls seep through into the forefront, lapping like the tide against the stoic wall of feedback loops.

The band have recently finished a stint at SXSW, the legendary Texan festival, showing off new material and fan favourites alike. If the coming year reflects their performances at all, then this will be a 2012 to remember for the dreamscape artistes. Moonlight Bride have mentioned that Twin Lakes won't be the only EP this year, and there will more than likely be a second full-length LP headed our way before the year is out.

'And The Death Ship Had A New Captain' closes the EP, a six-minute saga replete with vaguely dissonant guitar riffs and the lyric “All join hands...” hauntingly chanted. Off-key piano mashings throw shivers down your spine, and this closer becomes less and less familiar. The finalé is somewhat reminiscent of fellow noise-poppers Sleigh Bells, though far less aggravating, the menace remains.

We see a transformation on the EP, one that is no accident. The lengthy time it took to release Twin Lakes,coupled with the impeccable quality of the EP itself indicates a tenacious perfectionism, and the song order is definitively deliberate. The arcing of the Pains Of Being Pure At Heart effects-laden white noise of 'Diego', to the Manchester Orchestra-style doomfuzz of 'And The Death Ship...' showcases a wide palette of talent within the Tennessee natives. Expect 2012 to be the year they blow up.