When I was asked by the editors of this magazine to write a review for Crescent Moon, this name didn’t said me anything. No wonder, because the Dutch studio band only exists since 2014. The band was formed by brothers Eric and Frank Peters. Last year the twins Bass and Tim joined (sons of Frank). The four of them play a long list of instruments. They have been influenced a.o. by Pink Floyd and Radiohead, not the least.
Atmospheric sounds, together with several single words like ‘name’ … ‘phone’ … ‘e-mail’ at the start of ’Acceptatio’. This is nicely mixed in the speakers. There all kinds of sounds added, such as a creaking door. Through this remarkable beginning you are triggered right away to listen extra good. Remarkably well is the addition of the choir. Frank sings clearly, and that makes you think about the lyrics of ‘Black Vinyl Dreams’. Guitarist Chico Dommeck got complete freedom to fill in his solos to his own feelings. He has done well because it hits you to the bone. Those who still had doubts must be convinced after the first two songs.
‘The Bellman’ starts with the captivating classic, slow sound of a.o. brass instruments. There’s a whispering sound simultaneously with the vocals of Frank. Despite, or perhaps precisely because of the contradictions you hear this song is balanced. Just before the end the playing gets minimalistic. The song ends with a tender solo piano. Earlier Crescent Moon gave me goose bumps and now again.
A piano solo during the intro of ’Of Aphids and Ants’. Then you hear the voice of Obama, he talks about the internet. Sampling is not always a valuable addition but clearly it is here because it fits in with the theme. The twists are surprising. The backing vocals by Mirjam van Vuuren and Thea Leenders are used as a musical instrument and fills the whole song nicely. A portion of the acoustic guitar from Chico is deliberately heavily distorted to make it fit better into the whole.
The title track ‘The Lidless room’ is clearly different from the rest. The build-up is accessible and the lyrics are inviting more to sing along. Still, this track is more complicated than you think after the first impression. For the first time in ‘The Devil and the machine’ the layer on layer gets quite a little bit too much. This puts the music a little bit under pressure here and there. Yet the gifted bass groove from Eric can be heard sound through this track.
In ‘The Old Riverbed’ Chico shows his best. Everything fits so nicely together, and again you get touched. A piano solo is the intro to the instrumental song ‘Through the Gate’. In this quiet song you hear a lot of layers. You hear the crisp sound of the bugle played by Tim. The violin sounds surprising real.
This surprisingly good CD ends with a goosebumps moment. The musical connections are especially with Pink Floyd, yet Crescent Moon certainly has their own style. This 11-track album has to grow. It is very complex. By the layer on layer technique you hear new things even after 5 spins. The theme and how it is interwoven into texts and music, makes this an unique album. You can clearly hear that a lot of time is spent here.
If you hear their music, it is almost unbelievable that this is their first project. These men have made this all with heart and soul, without a commercial sound. They have succeeded.
(9/10, Independent release)
Translated by Frank Peter.