It’s late afternoon, before a long weekend. I’ve spent most of my work day switching between Idle Thumbs podcasts and the Rage Against the Machine discography, deciding to listen to both from the start.
Antartica, a three track EP by Moon Gravity is the perfect antithesis to that. 20 plus minutes of music spread across three tracks, predominantly comprised of drones and soundscapes.
The modulated bass and multi-tracked, almost chant-like vocals on Nightfall provides a psychedelic vibe. Repeated bass motifs with a constant rhythm fill in the role normally taken by drums, pushing the song forward at a slow, thoughtful feeling pace.
Track 2, Snowstorm starts with delayed guitar over some repeated drones and builds from there. Motifs are explored, they mutate and are built on, either with different instruments or a new textural element. Snowstorm is evocative of a faraway landscape, like the one pictured on the album artwork. One could easily picture this music being put over time-lapse footage of Aurora Australis or Borealis and being a perfect fit.
The reverberant vocals provide a nice additional element missing from much “post-rock” music, particularly when used with restraint as they have been here. Snowstorm evolves over its twelve-minute length, the drones make way for drum machines as backing for the guitar motif. The introduction of the electronic drums feels jarring at first but quickly feels like an expected part of the toolkit when the bass guitar becomes more prevalent in the mix.
The staples of this genre are all here; plenty of reverb and delay on clean guitars, a really rich and clear bass tone and solid playing. Purpling is an example of all of those elements put together quite nicely.
Overall, Antarctica is a solid EP which doesn’t overstay its welcome. The lack of acoustic drums and sparingly used vocals make for an interesting post-rock release that for $3USD there is no reason not to check it out.