The third album from Germany's Milky Chance, 2019's Mind the Moon is a burnished, blue-hued production that finds the duo of singer/guitarist Clemens Rehbein and singer/bassist Philipp Dausch further expanding their eclectic folk and dance-pop sound. As with 2017's Blossom, the album again features contributions by guitarist Antonio Felix Greger. Milky Chance have always evinced a love of various global musical traditions and Mind the Moon is no exception, kicking off with the moody and melancholic anthem "Fado." Named after the lyrical Portuguese folk genre, "Fado" is one of the group's most explicit homages to a style outside of their own and manages to capture the essence of the genre while marrying it to a hooky, contemporary pop sensibility. They achieve a similarly successful cross-border alchemy elsewhere, pairing with Belgian singer Téme Tan for the Afro-pop/electronica of "Rush" and South Africa's acclaimed vocal ensemble Ladysmith Black Mambazo, who supply their warm harmonies on the dusky, bass-driven "Eden's House." Milky Chance also bring on board Australia's Tash Sultana for the mid-tempo reggae number "Daydreaming." In fact, laid-back reggae rhythms underpin much of Mind the Moon, as on the hooky "The Game" and the dub-inflected "Long Run." Aesthetically, the yearning reggae, Afro-pop, and Latin vibes evoke the classic '80s style of artists like Sting and Peter Gabriel without ever sounding too overtly indebted to any one source. With Mind the Moon, Milky Chance offer a moon cycle's worth of sustained twilight-hour grooves.
AllMusic Review by Matt Collar