When there is something trending in Provo, UT word usually spreads rather quickly; a great example of this would be the name Jimmer. Well another example of this is a band called The Moth & The Flame. For several weeks, leading up to their Album Release party, random posters that read "11.11.11" filled the college town with anticipation and wonder. Word of mouth on the band spread quickly and it seemed as if the whole town knew about the bands upcoming show at Provo's Velour Live Music Gallery. Pre-sale tickets quickly sold out and the band decided to add a second show to meet the demand of their rapidly expanding fan base.
So who exactly is The Moth & The Flame? Well, here is what I dug up on them, they are Brandon Robbins (Vocals, Guitar) and Mark Garbett (Keys, Vocals) from Provo, Utah. They have their self-titled debut album out now which features 9 songs and can be purchased over at their website. The album is rather good and it kind of looks like Provo, Utah might have a hidden gem on their hands, as TM&TF are more then buzzband worthy.
Listening to the album I could hear at times some huge potential for something that might be worthy of a big stage presence. I could also hear some of that early 2000's alternative rock that the radio seemed to love over and over again. But when you dig a little deeper and give the album a few more listens you get a very mature and developed sound. There are moments of lush piano, guitar and vocal mixtures that work so well together. Garbett and Robbins have spent the past year experimenting and perfecting their album with adding layer after layer. They both have this to say about the album “You won’t find political statements, religious views or any of ‘the issues’ in these songs, although some have been interpreted that way,” “All of the songs on this album have come from an interesting place, a very serious and real place.” “The lyrics throughout the album focus on redemption and hope. There is no fear in the album of being positive,” said Garbett. “At the same time there is plenty of sincere struggle that you hear.”
'Maker' starts things off as a dark and misty opener, offering up some big synth sounds layered with haunting vocals. On 'How We Woke Up' the vocals come off with a nice little drawl. From the first two songs The Moth & The Flame show a talent in there music and song writing. There is definitely a confidence in their music, and you can tell this is a band that believes in what they are creating. Both 'Home' and 'Goodbye' give a nice change of pace slower side to the music with once again showcasing the vocals and letting them control where the songs go. 'Lullabye II' finds its way right square in the middle of the album and it is slow song perfection as it takes you on a mini personal journey.
The second half of the album seems to be a little fuller in its sound. '&' was my favorite song from the album as it shows more guitar sounds then any other song on the album. I felt that the guitar gently over powered the vocals and actually gave the song some edge which was a nice change. I would love to hear more guitar polished tunes like this from TM&TF in future releases. 'Entitled' and 'Dreamer' both feel very complete as individual songs, as they give the listener a little taste of everything. 'The Hunt' closes up the album perfectly, offering up all those chilling, laid back vocals and music heard in the previous 8 songs. It almost could be said that it is the "Conclusion" to the story the album was telling, and what that story is, is totally up to each individual listener.
Overall this album is a steady debut from The Moth & The Flame which tends to be heavy on the soft vocals and haunting guitars and keyboard. The 9 songs all work well together and go hand in hand with each other. There is no real single you would pull from here, it truly is a complete album and for the full experience it should be listened to with that intent.
ALBUM RATING: 4.0/5.0
The Moth & The Flame Tracklisting:
2. How We Woke Up
9. The Hunt
The Moth & The Flame Debut Album by TheMoth&TheFlame
Where to Find The Moth & The Flame: