i got my pre-order in yesterday and finally gave it a listen. i wanted to give it a first proper listen, on vinyl so i avoided the leak. it sounds and looks great!
somehow i got 2 slipmats in my order and i don't know what to do with one of them. does anyone want to buy one of them for real cheap? message me if you do, i don't need 2.
such a bummer about them going on hiatus but i saw an explanation of why on absolutepunk.net via the knitting factory ::
"When the members of Moving Mountains—vocalist/guitarist Gregory Dunn, guitarist/vocalist Joshua Kirby, bassist Mitchell Lee, and drummer Nicholas Pizzolato—returned home in July 2012 from their first European tour, they were tired and frustrated.
"I definitely lost sight of what Moving Mountains was, how it started, and how I should continue to approach it," Dunn recalls. "I wanted to relive the years of people not knowing who the band was, not being signed to a label, not having a team behind us, and sort of get back into the mindset of me and Nicky writing weird songs in my parents' basement."
Dunn refers to the era that produced the band's cultishly loved full-length debut, 2007's Pneuma, which would later be licensed to Deep Elm Records for a wider release. Not that what followed—2008's four-song, emotional post-rock mini-epic EP, Foreword, and 2011's bombastic, more concisely approached Waves—was received poorly. Hardly. The self-released Foreword helped the band maintain momentum, while the longer-gestating Waves rode tides of bombastic aggression and sonically disarming, well, waves, that condensed their songs into more bite-sized, digestible lengths. That album also helped launch a partnership with celebrated New York independent record label Triple Crown Records, and found them supporting it on some of the biggest tours of their career with bands like Coheed and Cambria, Thrice, and Biffy Clyro.
The three months given to write their new album wasn't ideal, granted. "We got into this band with everything being on our own terms," Dunn says, "and we like to do everything ourselves. When people start saying, 'You have to finish it by this time,' it never works out."
For the writing of Moving Mountains, Dunn says he tried to get adopt the frame of mind during the band's initial years, while they even sketched out songs in the classroom of an abandoned high school for a month—the exact sort of place where Moving Mountains' earliest riffs and melodies were probably thought up by Dunn while sitting in his high school classes.
"It's funny," he says. "I feel like we've made a giant loop around. With this album, it sort of focused in on getting how I was back in the Pneuma days. I was consciously thinking, Where was I back when I was writing Pneuma, and where was I when I was 16 years old? I wanted to get back to that mindset because of the stress of the Waves cycle. I even rearranged my apartment in a certain way that would make it easy to totally zone out and get back into that mindset of when I was younger. Focus everything else out."
However, while Dunn's mournful themes of loss ran consistently through much of the band's earlier material, Moving Mountains emerged with more well-rounded experiences. "I think this record was so much more about what was going on with everyone in the band," Dunn says, "rather than what was just going on in my head. Both musically and lyrically, we all shared the same stories. But the most apparent theme was handling those interpersonal relationships while consistently being away from them."
The band brought those fresh perspectives and song skeletons to their dream producer Matt Goldman (Underoath, the Chariot, Copeland) at Glow in the Dark Studios in Atlanta, GA, tracking most of the record there. Near the end of its completion, they headed back home to self-record overdubs and the proverbial bells and whistles in various rooms with some help from long-time band producer Mike Kalajian, just like the old days. After deciding upon nine completed songs, they worked out a proper flow and settled upon self-titling it.
"I definitely had a sound in mind that I wanted to achieve, and it was nowhere near the mindset I was in while writing Waves," Dunn says. "I wanted a soft, powerful record, that wasn't about being aggressive and tearing your throat out.
"We just wanted to make a record that we'll be proud of 10 years from now," he continues. "[Nowadays] it's like, just put out a record that sounds kinda okay, that kids will like, and then you'll go to the top and fizzle out really fast. And we really didn't want that to happen to us on this record."
While Dunn talks about pulling from his more tranquil teenage years for Moving Mountains, the album actually does begrudgingly invoke the tired trope of an aging band's oft-described "maturity." Compared to Waves, it's slowed-down. It's graceful. It's surprisingly more electronic-heavy than most anything in the band's storied catalog, with Rhodes keys gently sending elegant ripples across tracks like "Hudson" and the impressively swift six minutes of chilling closer "Apsides". But Moving Mountains isn't merely forced entry into adulthood: The influences permeating the band's music since forming remain, recalling the patient, beautiful ebb and flow of Jimmy Eat World's Clarity and the more, breathy restrained side of Thrice's Alchemy Index project. Dunn even occasionally culls the smoky vocal strain of singer-songwriter Rocky Votolato—notably on disarming opener "Swing Set", and playful, penultimate number "Chords"—for a vaguely folky tilt to the entire affair.
But the record's lighter expressions still boast soaring force and energy in cuts like "Burn Pile" and the aforementioned "Hudson". "We were trying to figure out a way to express the same type of feeling, just with a bit of restraint," Dunn says. It makes for a record that indeed touches upon the mannerly air that first endeared listeners to the band more than a half-decade past, and at the same time, marks a stark turn away from that material as well as, especially, the merely two-year-old Waves.
"We're thinking in terms of 20 years from now," Dunn boasts ambitiously. "If someone goes back and they're like, 'Remember Moving Mountains?' We want them to remember this album.
"The most rewarding part of having been involved with Moving Mountains was hearing stories of people being inspired in ways beyond the music," Dunn adds. "Every band has another band to be in debt to, and it's definitely cyclical. There's so many bands that inspired our sound, of many different styles throughout our career. But, you know, I feel like I owe certain artists so much more for helping shape certain perspectives for me. If I can do that for other people, then that's what I hope we're known for."