Moonsville Collective - 'Moonsville IV' (album stream) (premiere)
The California Americana collective do good by their promise to release four EPs throughout 2017 with the acoustic thrills of Moonsville IV.
Moonsville Collective may be from Long Beach, but their sound is anything but city-slicker material. The band of suburban LA natives sought rambling residence in the central regions of their state early on in their careers, playing with old-school music circles and jug bands.
Their music may have evolved in some ways since those early days, but those firsthand experiences in song circles paired with touring the country and sharing the stage with the likes of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers and Nitty Gritty Dirt Band have still all been working into their sound for the better. Moonsville Collective are still producing windswept roots material that feels utterly connected to the pulse of America's heartland. It's just that, these days, their sound is a bit more polished while they do so.
It's been one heck of a year for the burgeoning roots collective, too. At the start of 2017, Moonsville Collective committed themselves to creating four EPs worth of material by the years' end, with 20 songs crafted in the studio throughout the year total. Moonsville I, II, and III have come and gone, and now everything is coming full-circle as the band fulfills their promise with Moonsville IV. And in the spirit of coming full-circle, they're using their final EP of the year to return to their acoustic roots while they're at it.
On Moonsville IV, the collective fully give themselves into the nu-folk sound. On one hand, it's an introspective collection of five tunes that truly understand the value of social awareness, empathy, and letting one's deepest thoughts and feelings out in song. On the other, it's a captivating whirlwind of acoustic sound that embraces modern frills in arrangement to keep listeners on their twos. Collectively, one can say it's the most Moonsville Collective body of Moonsville Collective work released this year, as a culmination of all of the band's greatest strengths and influences.
Within the songs of which Moonsville IV is comprised, the band laments the state of the country, shares an ode for a lost friend, and takes a drive through Texan backcountry. Each theme is tackled convincingly enough to paint a picture or lend a sympathetic shoulder for their audience to lean on. Through and through, this is the Moonsville Collective at their finest, and a strong collection of songs to entertain for anyone who appreciates roots music.
"There's always a lot of tunes and ideas being passed around between the band, and when it comes to putting out a singular record, bands can often just pick the ten songs that are written, or that fall into a certain vain, or three good ones and seven fillers," says vocalist, banjoist, and guitarist Corey Adams. "We've surely done that."
"Our last album, Heavy Howl, was released in late 2014, and we toured on that for a couple years without putting any new material out. We found it frustrating to have to pick a batch of songs and marry them for another year or two, and essentially just wanted be more spontaneous - no formula. More songs, more attention to detail, more artwork, more to get excited about. We've been playing together a long time now, and keeping things exciting is essential to our creativity, our friendship, and I hope for our fans. After all is said and done, we feel really happy with the four EPs, and are already looking forward to doing something different in 2018."