If your musical world, or void, needs something to shake it up, something eclectic, perplexing, entertaining, sometimes weird, you may want to check out the Bay Area's MoeTar. The band was created by singer singer Moorea Dickason and bassist/songwriter/lyricist Tarik Ragab, and then populated by notable local musicians. Entropy of the Century is their second album for Magna Carta Records.
Largely, MoeTar draws from various streams of rock music sounds, from the more popular to the equally vague, from pop to psychedelic to art to fusion, and maybe even some Lerner and Loewe musicals. The music is everywhere and all over the place with shift time signature, bending meters, and a general abundance of sound that appears as organized cacophony.
It's as if, while throwing about ideas and composing the songs, our versatile and eclectic musicians simply tossed this guitar part with these chords, than added this bass line willy nilly, and out popped Welcome the Solar Flares or Dystopian Fiction. There can be a crush of instrumentation, with all parts flailing about and attempting to bitch slap the other with Silly String as with Raze The Maze or Confectioner's Curse.
Now toss in Dickason's versatile and generous vocals, and you have even more ear shattering complexity. Her voice moves with cleverness equal to the individual and sum of the other instrumental parts. Some vocalist play a singular part, but not Dickason as her vocal lines drift from gentle lilting to free flying gonzo staccato to fierce directness. Often it's all in one song like Where The Truth Lies, or simply one part, like the gentleness of Benefits. Frankly, her voice reminds me a certain person. If you've ever seen or heard the film version of My Fair Lady featuring Audrey Hepburn, you know she didn't sing her songs. Marni Nixon did the singing for Hepburn, and that's who Dickason sounds like to me. Strange.
But that could be the operative word for MoeTar and Entropy of the Century, in the very best sense. If anything, curves are thrown, like so many musical boomerangs you have to duck with the dexterity of a ballet dancer. There's a suspicious curiosity to every song, excepting maybe the more straightforward Benefits. When MoeTar attempts anything close to familiar accessibility, be warned, things aren't going to necessarily end that way. A case in point is Friday Night Dreams, a bright piece with a terrific melody and catchy refrain. But then the instrumental breakdown treads lines between bouncy circus music and traditional melodic rock, notably in the guitar line. Most every song turns on the simple notion that MoeTar intends to make their music predictably unpredictable as can be.
Just then it hit me. MoeTar reminds me of circus music, or maybe a soundtrack for a freak show. When I listen I visualize clowns, jesters, and general troubadours in brightly colored, incongruous, clothing entering a tent, some on small bicycles, others leading dancing bears or dogs, some juggling small animals like hamsters, all grinning with the maniacal pleasure of those knowing the inside joke of their jocularity. Yes, MoeTar is a band to stimulate, and possibly shatter, your musical sensibilities while they mess with your head.
MoeTar is a band to stimulate, and possibly shatter, your musical sensibilities while they mess with your head
Mat Sinner is both an icon and legend in the German, and the larger European, hard rock and heavy metal scene. Cranking out music since 1982, Sinner is an industrious and prolific musician and producer whether through his namesake band, the heavy metal heroes Primal ... [ Read More ]