The front-man of Sunset Rubdown and Wolf Parade, Spencer Krug, has proved that he never tires of experimentation in his newest album Organ Music Not Vibraphone Like I'd Hoped for his third musical project, Moonface. The album is stuffed with dizzying techno synths, warm organ melodies, surprising pop breakdowns, and the familiarity of Krug's haunting croon.
Although Organ Music only contains five songs, each are more or less seven minutes. Krug recognizes the crowded intensity of the album, sharing that it "is dense, but in a satisfying way, I hope, like eating a small, heavy piece of cheesecake. It's music played with an organ, organ beats, organ beeps and bloops, and some digital drums. Music based on layers and loops, the hypnotizing sound of a leslie speaker, and the onslaught of melody." Although Krug experimented with lush undertones, the true risk he took with this album was poppy melodies, or at least in comparison to the music generated from his other two bands.
At times the album feels like one long stream of Krug's experiments than distinct songs, but then he throws us a curveball like "Fast Peter" that forces us to power through it and continue to listen. The sprinkling electric drums and, yes, the organ pulsate through the beginning of the song and threaten an explosion. Krug smashes together a heavier frantic keyboard line with a gentle, graceful one. Krug explains that he has "a little dude who lives inside me that loves pop music, and he sometimes finds his way into my hands. When this happens, my fingers move toward the catchiest melodies they can, like bees to flowers with the most pollen. It can't be helped." Well, the little pop dude has clearly been surfaced in "Fast Peter" and we can't wait for him to take over once again. The song is definitely the highlight of the album, and quite possibly of his career so far.
There are other moments in the album that set themselves apart from the density of Organ Music, such as extra terrestrial sound of "Whale Song (Song Instead Of A Kiss)" and the effervescent keyboard intro of "Return To The Violence Of The Ocean Floor," but compared to "Fast Peter," they aren't as memorable. The album is far from disappointing, but Krug seems a little unsure of himself in this album, stating, "Moonface will probably never sound like Wolf Parade or Sunset Rubdown. Lately, my musical ideas are quickly changing things, not steady or constant. They are completely unreliable, and so I lurch toward them impulsively." With three bands and a surplus of albums on his plate, it's good to see that Spencer Krug still has the energy to take chances in his music. And judging from his past, there should be more of Moonface to come.