24 July 2007

Mono in VCF

ALERT: Mono in VCF's music is so excellent you just might want to skip out on reading anything I've got to say about it and head right down to listen to the three songs posted below. I mean it. Waste no time. Go listen now.

What? You were going to do that anyway? Fair enough, I just had to let you know though, right away, that you might want to skip over the usual pleasantries and cut right to the chase. Because here I'm simply going to write about how wonderful they are, how amazing their lead singer's voice is, and how perfectly they've been able to capture the essence of the mood and style they're aiming for. Don't worry, by the end of the post you'll understand why I immediately fell in love with the three songs posted below but you could find out for yourself by simply listening right away.

Mono in VCF is a five piece band from Tacoma, WA that, believe it or not, is currently without a record label. By my estimation this makes them, oh, ONE OF THE TOP UNSIGNED BANDS IN AMERICA. Seriously, someone get on it and sign these guys. If you're a label person reading this I'll break it down for you in simple terms: they're better than half the bands on your label. You know who already knows this (other than myself)? Jarvis Cocker. He selected the band to open his Seattle tour date in April. Are you listening to "Escape City Scrapers" yet? Makes perfect sense that he'd have picked this band to open for him doesn't it?

Other posts I've read about Mono in VCF waste no time in mentioning Phil Spector in regards to the band and their sound and I can understand why. First of all, they've chosen to name themselves after certain synthesizer terminology/production technique that relates to both Bob Moog and Phil Spector. "Mono in" means, well, mono in. This is an obvious shout out to Phil Spector's mono “Wall of Sound” production techniques and echoes of the band's love of all things Spector can be heard throughout all of their songs. "VCF" stands for voltage-controlled filter which, if I may without sounding too synth-nerdy, is a filter you're likely to find on many analog synthesizers that allows the user to vary the cutoff frequency of the signal to create a wide variety of textures and sounds. Awesome right? HERE are some instructions for how to build your own VCF, if you're into that kind of thing.

Back to the music though, because that's exactly how Mono in VCF so completely grabbed my attention. I've spent a great deal of time longing for more music in my life along the lines of To Bring You My Love, Dummy, So That Tonight I Might See, This Is Hardcore... not music sounding exactly like those albums (though a quick description of Mono in VCF calling them "This Is Hardcore era Pulp as if fronted by Hope Sandoval" would be more than just a wee bit on the money) but rather music that is born of a similar artistic intent. Mono in VCF have touched upon that magical cinematic pop sound we all were hoping to hear when we first learned that Morrissey was to be working with Ennio Morricone. Sadly, that partnership didn't work out very well in the studio. Thankfully Mono in VCF have succeeded where Morrissey and Morricone failed.

This is the sound of lonely romantic yearnings played out through the camera lens of your mind in that hyper-real state that makes everything that passes before your eyes seem as if it were a scene in a movie. It's the sound of sitting alone in the park and watching the orange and yellow leaves float from the branch to the lake, then from the middle of the lake to the shore. It's the classic Phil Spector sound but aged and distilled over time (and now reborn) as if melancholy had never been delivered before with such an honest grasp of pop songcraft. What Mono in VCF presents is a sound perfectly aligned with their influences and an artistic vision as well defined as any I've seen from a band that has yet to even release their debut LP. This band should not be ignored. Excuse me while I go listen to these three songs again.

Listen:
"Escape City Scrapers"
"Spider Rotation"
"The Only One"

Visit Mono in VCF on MySpace and listen to "Masha".

9 comments:

hayes said...

this music is life changing

Anonymous said...

Hayes be smokin dope. I donno about life changing but the girls voice is great.

jreadymade said...

THIS BAND IS SO GOOD. GIVE MY BAND A CHANCE SOMETIME!

Nilbog Lady said...

Your spam link doesn't even work jready. And I have to agree with both VH1's Best Week Ever (which is how I got here!) AND with Earfarm. This band, these songs, SO GOOD. Did anybody see the stupid person who commented on BWE and said that the label they work at has demos from this band just sitting around and she doesn't "get it"???? What a numbskull!

Jack DF said...

Yeh really, that label is brain dead.

Anonymous said...

I have loved Mono In VCF ever since they first started out. I’m so excited that they are finally getting the recognition they deserve. SOMEBODY SIGN THEM ALREADY!

nards said...

I found "escape" much more compelling than the rest. I don't know exactly why--maybe the vocals--but i'm reminded of the doors. just add the 60s bond movie strings in the chorus.

With recordings and production like that, maybe they can afford not to be signed.

I'm curious to see how they'd be live. it could either suck or be awesome. nothing in between.

Red said...

I found them all compelling really. All are unique modern pop songs. Anxious to hear more.

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