Minor Moon is the songwriting project of Sam Cantor, a musician based in Chicago, IL. Minor Moon’s latest effort is a 5 song EP titled What Our Enemies Know. Inspired in large part by the experience of uprooting from New England to the Midwest, Cantor’s newest handful of songs explore the tension between being haunted and embattled by ghosts and enemies, both real and imagined, while simultaneously affirming the lightness, playfulness and love required to overcome these universal challenges. Across the EP, the tracks reverberate within and reflect upon one another, and Cantor’s songwriting demonstrates both increased discipline and experimentation compared to previous releases. Meanwhile, the performances captured during these recording sessions are as raw and improvisational as they are measured and intentional. In addition to Cantor on guitar and vocals, What Our Enemies Know showcases Minor Moon’s most cohesive and consistent lineup to date featuring Chicago-based musicians Nathan Bojko on drums, Michael Downing on bass and vocals, and Colin Drozdoff on keyboards.
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 EP, Faultlines, and a full-length record, A Whisper, A Shout, a lush and dynamic ten-song mediation on beauty, disgust, ambiguity, and affirmation.
Minor Moon’s What Our Enemies Know is the premier release of Ruination Records, an artist-run label based in Brooklyn and Chicago, and co-founded by Cantor and his two oldest musical collaborators and friends, Dan Knishkowy and Andrew Stocker. What Our Enemies Know will be out on January 20th, 2017.
Beyond his work with Minor Moon, Sam has played and sung with a number of bands and vocal ensembles, performing around the United States and internationally. He currently plays with a few other bands around Chicago and in New York and teaches at The Old Town School of Folk Music in Chicago.
Photographer: Paul Moody