Dread-laced and hopeful, meticulous and ecstatic - the music of Chicago based Minor Moon dances with contradictions. Using a palette that leans heavily on folk rock and alt-country styles and instrumentation, bandleader and songwriter Sam Cantor wrestles together something altogether different, with songs that slip through the hold of well-worn definitions and expectations.
The band's latest single, Sacrificial Animal, is a guitar-driven spirit journey centering around the juxtaposed images of a ritual animal sacrifice and an unkempt apartment. Singer/songwriter Sam Cantor's dusky lyrics float in and out of major licks and dramatic pauses, stopping to reflect at the song's moment of greatest potency: “Maybe I feel betrayed by the holy and the profane.”
Inspired by the rooted innovativeness of contemporary artists like Wilco, Grizzly Bear, Radiohead, Bon Iver, and Gillian Welch as well as the sound and craft of older folk and folk rock musicians like Nick Drake, Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, and Van Morrison, Minor Moon’s soulful, complex, “americana-esque” sound strikes a unique balance between a vintage and modern sound palate, mysterious and revelatory lyrics, and a contemplative and emphatic spirit.
Minor Moon began as a series of bedroom demos written and recorded by Cantor during college in early 2011, which he performed while hosting monthly house shows featuring acoustic music by friends and traveling musicians. After college, while living in Cambridge and Somerville, MA, Cantor continued to perform, this time with a rotating cast of musicians under the name Minor Moon. In the process, Minor Moon released an early demo EP, Faultlines, and a full-length record, A Whisper, A Shout, a lush and dynamic ten-song mediation on beauty, disgust, ambiguity, and affirmation.
In January 2017, Minor Moon released What Our Enemies Know, a 5 song EP that has been described variously as "Pink Floydian" (XRT's Richard Milne), "like a sinister Cat Stevens" (Midwest Record), "somewhere between the classic sound of Neil Young and Van Morrison and contemporary folk-rock from the likes of Grizzly Bear" (Various Small Flames), and "reminiscent of Procol Harum or The Band working their way through a set of Lambchop covers." (Nooga.com)
Minor Moon will release their second full length album via Ruination Record Co. in February 2019.
Photographer: Paul Moody