This has been a breakout year for San Francisco artist Luis Vasquez, who records and performs as the Soft Moon. It saw release of his excellent self-titled debut album on the Brooklyn label Captured Tracks -- 11 songs of pummeling, noirish gloom that instantly gained the Soft Moon a national reputation.
After tours and numerous high-profile S.F. shows -- including an excellent Noise Pop Festival set -- Vasquez is about to release more music. His Total Decay EP is out on Oct. 31 (Halloween!), and you can hear the title track now.
The song finds Vasquez working very much in the linear, grayscale mode as his self-titled album -- screeches and scrapes cast in ghostly echoes complement a basic melody and repetitive beat. But what strikes us about this song is Vasquez's vocals, which sound, not surprisingly, richer, more developed, and less mumbly than his previous work. This is sort of to be expected -- Vasquez recorded those early songs in his Oakland apartment, not a professional studio. Wherever "Total Decay" was recorded, it finds Vasquez taking steps forward with his sound, while retaining the elements that make it distinctive and haunting. Check this out:
Vasquez will celebrate the release of his new EP with a show on Halloween at the Independent. Here's the tracklisting:
3. Total Decay