Mobius Band


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Switching from Ghostly to Misra, the Mobius Band reveals itself as a tighter, more seasoned group on Heaven. While the band's full-length debut, The Loving Sounds of Statid, had some wistful electronic indie pop charms, at times it seemed a little tentative and unfocused. However, Heaven's opening track, "Hallie," shows how much the Mobius Band has grown since their early days: the vocals are more confident, the songwriting is hookier, and the group has locked in on a sound that works for them, letting their electronics decorate crystal-clear melodies. Granted, this sound might not be especially radical, but the Mobius Band's sophisticated, genre-straddling pop and sparkling electronic rock fits in well with the likes of Phoenix, the French Kicks, and even the more emotional side of LCD Soundsystem. Heaven is also the work of a much livelier band; "Secret Language" and "Leave the Keys in the Door"'s whipped-up guitars and squealing synths have undeniable kinetic energy that probably comes from the extensive touring the band did after The Loving Sounds of Static. The Mobius Band's newfound focus doesn't exclude experimentation, though. "Under Sand"'s slightly atonal synths end up making the song's melody sound that much sweeter, and "Control" morphs from music box innocence to a dancing-on-your-troubles rocker with effortless ebb and flow. Heartbreak is still the order of the day on Heaven, but even here the band shows growth; witty songs like "Hint of Blood" and "Friends Like These" make dysfunctional relationships seem almost appealing. "I can't tell the difference between your love and your company," Peter Sax sings on "I Am Always Waiting," and while those lyrics could be devastating, he delivers them with a lightness that makes them compassionate and wry (and, ultimately, maybe more affecting than obvious emotion would be). A few songs tend toward repetition, but Heaven moves quickly and leaves listeners wanting more -- surely signs of a band hitting its stride.

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