Moritat is difficult to describe. The band features hints of postpunk, folk, R&B, jazz, and more (to give you an idea: Serbian folk music is mentioned in our interview), but you’d be hard-pressed to assign a single genre to one of their songs, much less to the band as a whole. There’s a dark, driving force in their music that occasionally gives way to something calmer and sweeter: a juxtaposition that heightens the impact of both ends of the spectrum. For the majority of the time, the band occupies a space between straightforward emotions -- there’s no joyous, sad, or angry Moritat song -- though there could be, say, joy-ominous. Maybe they’re inventing their own emotions.
The first track on their CSC single is a prime example: “Shopping” mashes together a dark, atmospheric, and dancey groove with lyrics (sung largely in gorgeous two- and three-part harmonies) that sound like they might be from the perspective of a teenage girl preoccupied with partying and, well, shopping. The triviality of the line “I want to party with all of my friends / ‘til the end” takes on a much more apocalyptic tone. Similarly, “We’d” is a touchingly bittersweet goodbye to a planet we’re losing, or at least changing, through our inaction.
It’s rare that each member of a band sits on as equal footing as do the members of Moritat; each performer brings as much to the table as the next. In addition to all three members singing, Venus Laurel provides keyboards with low-fi style, Konstantin Jace plays alternately spacey and aggressive bass lines, and Corey McCafferty just slays on the drums.
Moritat is weird. Listen to them.
released May 14, 2014
Venus Laurel - Keyboards, Vocals
Konstantin Jace - Bass, Guitar, Vocals
Corey McCafferty - Drums, Vocals
Jeff Kelley - Engineer
Cassie Balynas - Videography / Editing
Iris Lin - Videography / Interview
Kerri Hacker - Photography
Kevin Claxton - Production Assistant
Jordan Morrell - Production Assistant
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