Black Moth Super Rainbow

Black Moth Super Rainbow

Black Moth Super Rainbow

Start A People

Graveface Records

Blood on the dancefloor! Blood on the motherboard! Black Moth Super Rainbow comes off as a wide-eyed and infectiously smiley hybrid of Boards of Canada (similarly pastoral and electronica), MIA Moog fetish deviants Add N To X and a particularly grueling round of 80s super-sensation game Simon. Or maybe I’m thinking of those really cool idylls on, I think it was, 3-2-1 Contact or Sesame Street where they’d cut to, y’know, a spider spinning a web or a snake molting or something and play these bizarrely organic Moog companion pieces to soundtrack the processes of nature. I’ve heard Start A People before somewhere: Snatches of songs by Aphrodite 666, the hem of Rick Wakeman’s cape, maybe even some leftover mutterings from “Mr. Roboto,” Radiohead circa Kid A. The sun rises and sets, flowers bloom to their fullness, mother birds bring back food for their hungry gulping offspring, and through it all, with this music by your side, you’ll constantly face the future, beaming in your floppy cap like a Soviet worker poster. Lessee here, Quintron with the emphasis on the TRON portion? That’s true too. Banks and banks of vintage synths, keyboards, moogs and other assorted instruments of the future are pitted against live garage-band drumming (or so it seems) and vocals that are processed, distorted and masked into a beacon of robotic optimism and/or strange ghost-trapped-in-the-machine fragility. It’s retro-futurist optimism that wouldn’t be out of place on the “futuristic turntables” of those unisex-jumpsuited teenagers in Epcot’s World of Tomorrow. But no matter how much they try to present the happy march of the machines and the humans, hand in hand to Xanadu, there are moments when a very human melancholy and sadness peak through. Like on “I Think It’s Beautiful That You Are 256 Colors Too,” where the robotic vocals crack momentarily with a very real regret against impossibly delicate music-box keyboards. It’s every bit as hopeful and simultaneously hopeless as the earnest valentine given to the head cheerleader by the anonymous school geek. You tried your very best, and that was good enough.

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