Review: Black Moth Super Rainbow Guided Metro Through a Sonic Trip

Thomas Fec makes music that will either give you nightmares or soothe you into a state of complete serenity. The nightmares tend to be closely related to his TOBACCO project, a dismantling of electronic music to the point of extreme glitches and gnarled melodies that haunt you in the best way possible. His other project, Black Moth Super Rainbow, finds itself in the more ethereal territory, like a molecular massage whilst on a gentle psychedelic trip. That feeling was on full display during their set at the Metro, where the vibes range the auditory spectrum in excellent ways. Before the more mellow sounds could make their way to the stage, Lasers and Fast and Shit quite literally tore through my eardrums in a blisteringly rapid set. The emphasis should definitely be on the “Fast” in their name as even front man (and Metro’s Booking Czar) Joe Carsello couldn’t help but make reference to. “We’ve written 13 songs. We’ve gone through 9 of them in the first 15 minutes.” My numbers may be off but the sentiment is there. Lasers and Fast and Shit trounced through their time with some incredibly brutal hardcore songs that warmed up the crowd with ease. Their back drops of erratically flashing lights paired well with the band’s unbridled energy. It was a loud and almost painful performance, but one that left me and most of the audience satisfied with its intensity. If Lasers and Fast and Shit were one extreme of the evening's musical spectrum, then The Stargazer Lilies fit right in the center of it all. The shoegaze outfit’s tunes definitely feature a softer edge than that of the opener, but can be seen thrashing in their guitar just a loudly and fiercely. The band, made up of John Cep, Kim Field, and Cliff Albert, created an engrossing atmosphere as they blasted through their set. Field’s soft and welcoming vocals throughout broke through Albert’s ferocious drumming and Cep’s beautifully distorted guitars. The melding of these sounds made for some lush songs that filled the Metro with psychedelic vibes. Going from extreme intensity to psychedelic grooves, it was finally time to indulge in the hallucinogenic experience that is a Black Moth Super Rainbow show. A mesh curtain was dropped between the stage and the crowd, making way for projections that would fill the canvas with complimentary images to the other screen nestled at the back of the stage. Nestled between the two would be Black Moth Super Rainbow: Steve SLV, pony diver, Iffernaut, the seven fields of aphelion, and TOBACCO. Just typing that lineup of musicians out felt like running down the list of a new superhero team, or a new squad of villains. The current lineup of BSMR blended into their surrounding with ease. The synchronous images played with one other creating an almost holographic display where the seven fields of aphelion and pony driver’s synths could surge, the ninja clad Iffernaut could blast away at the drums, Steve SLV’s bass could reach its deep lows, and TOBACCO could lay his vocoder drenched vocals over it all. It was borderline impossible not to let one's self get lost in the band's trance like songs, especially with a setlist that spanned their discography so well. Their drippy synths and absorbing vocals that bleed into the songs have been slow exploration inward, sounding more and more like themselves with every passing album. Some bands could wind up sounding stagnant as they feed into their signature sound, but BSMR dedication to perfecting the oozing quality of their tracks is refreshing Despite a break for an encore, the set felt like one seamless experience. Dandelion Gum jams intertwining with Panic Blooms newness as if they always belonged just as Eating Us' and Cobra Juicy tracks delighted the crowd. Their set lulled me into a hypnotic state that last the entirety of their time on stage, successfully transporting me and the crowd to their weird and surreal aural realm.
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Julian Ramirez