Indianapolis trio Saint Aubin is built on electric ambiance and moody guitar work that evokes loneliness and anger. With their sound they seek to explore on their release Moonlight Monster the darker side of our lives; the things we keep secret.
The title track tells you all you need to know. Opening with a murky bassline, the song skulks along as vocals, sounding a bit grizzled, sing about being a different monster in moonlight. A blues guitar melody carries just as much of the tune as the bass and drums. “Whittle” is more somber, less aggressive; the main element being a sparse strum throughout. The atmosphere is dense but not heavy; all the players (and the listener) are given plenty of room to breathe as the music rises and swells.
“Futile Devices” the album's closer and longest track is the most downbeat on display; a narrative that pulses with genuine isolation as the lyrics reassure us that, “I don't hate my life.” As it progresses it becomes more of an anthem, adapting a more deliberate pace and beat.
Perhaps that’s the greatest strength of the EP: the music can and does exist independently of the lyrics. It's not merely serving as a backdrop to be sung over. Some tracks even evolve to a degree, changing their skin and style entirely like opener “This Is Our Untitled Song.” By the four-minute mark the singing stops and the guitar takes over with a twinge of flare. With the haze and the murkiness that permeates the entirety of Moonlight Monster it's really easy to enjoy the effort on multiple levels.
The words and the sounds certainly do play well together, but people who just want to lose themselves in the atmosphere and the feel of a song have plenty to work with here too. Fans of garage rock and blues will have no trouble adapting to Saint Aubin.
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