The Molochs' "America's Velvet Glory"
By Jesii Dee
The Molochs, comprised of Lucas Fitzsimons and Ryan Foster, bring about a creative explosion on their latest creation, America's Velvet Glory. Cultivating their craft in the depths of Long Beach and recording at famed JazzCats Studio, the result is a refreshing album that luckily doesn't suffer from a heavy-handed perfection production, filled with a well-written, just polished enough set of 11 tracks.
The Molochs bring you up to speed with what they've been up to with the first track "Ten Thousand," with Foster’s organ front and center. Fitzsimons song writing is on point, descriptive & telling a story, weaving it into the tapestry of the guitars, organ, and drums. He creates a melody of his own to run in tandem with lyrics about love gone wrong, the darkness it can create, and the possibility for optimism.
The electric guitar punches through the rest on the foot-stomp worthy second track "No Control." With its catchy repetitive chorus of the title, this song will get stuck in your head. They veer into some country sounds with "That's The Trouble With You," but in the way 70's Americana did: true throwback garage rock sound that is both nostalgic and still fresh. "Little Stars" slow things down, looping back around to the organ and electric guitar foundation. The song is a bit haunting as it paints a picture of a dark and desolate street, and how truly small you are compared to the literal universe. Bringing back the idea of staying optimistic, this short little song sends a big message.
The last half of the record is just as consistent as the first; in a world where EPs rule, these 11 tracks all work well together. "No More Cryin'" even throws in a guitar solo that, while self-indulgent by nature, doesn't luckily veer into that territory. "You and Me" follows suit with Fitzsimons describing a lost love in the throes of jealousy and longing for the potential that once was.
Breaking from the human condition theme, "New York" is an ode to a crazy city and its lyric "Electric lights // We're all children in the night" resonates that energy. Fitzsimons drawl in "I Don't Love You" as he rumbles through the words and the deep sighs within lend themselves well to the story being told. Closing out the record, "You Never Learn" is about someone who doesn’t learn from small things, like tripping over crack in the sidewalk. It's a solid song, mixing in the elements that create The Molochs: organ, guitar, easy melodies, and a story.
Overall, this is the kind of band that you want to see in your local dive bar venue on a Friday night: talented musicians, unfussy songwriting, and an overall good time vibe.