Already appearing twice on our virtual pages, Moon Walker is a mixture of White Stripes, T Rex, Stevie Wonder and Talking Heads. A rather unique combination but something that just works when performed by Moon Walker. The brainchild of long-time friends Harry Springer (vocals and guitar) and Sean McCarthy (drums), the US-based duo have performed with artists like Cage The Elephant, Young The Giant and many others. In fact, the pair performed before 20,000 people as their previous project As The Midnight Club. We’re not here to speak about their previous work and current gigging exploits, we’re here to review the latest addition to their discography ‘Disturbed Suburbia’.
Recorded in the lads’ apartment, ‘Disturbed Suburbia’ follows the well-received single ‘Lights Burn Out’ (read our review here). Retaining their politically-charged conceptual themes, the new single touches on contemporary issues of narrow-mindedness, racism and, as they put it, the “…shallow traits of the suburbs in America.” Both men grew up in the suburbs in Colorado but as they aged, they found the innate inconsistencies and shallowness of the ‘burbs. As such, the lads searched for escapism and found such in music – something they choose to share with their audience.
A very intimate song, ‘Disturbed Suburbia’ reviews their childhood in privileged suburbia but through a looking glass. Instead of saying, “oh, yeah, I had a good and fortunate upbringing”, Moon Walker picks through the nitty-gritty of a socially insecure world. It’s like Green Day that destroys the mindset of stubborn suburbia in their song ‘American Idiot’, but there is far more distinctiveness in the Motown-esque sound.
While the track has a groovy vibe with a strong likening to Stevie Wonder in its toe-tapping nature, there is a juxtaposition with more melancholic and intense lyricism. Springer’s warm vocals meld effortlessly with the dynamic drums and guitar creating a kaleidoscopic soundscape. I hear elements of Phish as the rock-ness comes through; however, the youthful tremor to Springer’s tone definitely represents the modern-day generation. While the topics of narrow-mindedness and inequality are not exclusive to any period, it is interesting to see younger artists review these conceptual themes.