|All in All|
Bob Moses — All in All •♦• A Brooklyn house music duo who specialize in smooth tracks, midtempos, and post–club moods.
•♦• Music that will make you want to build a highway through a low income neighbourhood.
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada ~~ Brooklyn, NYC
Album release: April 18th (vinyl version)
Record Label: Domino Recording Co
01 Far From The Tree 8:07
02 Winter's Song 7:09
03 All I Want 7:48
04 Interloper 4:44
05 Stealing Fire 5:05
06 Hands To Hold 7:34
07 Hands To Hold (Acoustic) 4:21
08 Too Close For Comfort 8:51
09 Val 4:17
10 It's Gone 8:57
11 I Ain't Gonna Be The First To Cry 5:39
12 Grace 6:59
© 2015 Domino Recording Co Ltd
•♦• Tom Howie / Jimmy Vallance 1 10
•♦• Mitch Bottler / Michael Price / Dan Walsh 11
•♦• Anthony Collins / Francis Harris / Bob Moses 12
•♦• Tom Howie
•♦• Jimmy Vallance
•♦• Canadian grown (legally), New York formed duo is one of the latest acts to release on the boutique label Scissor and Thread. Although only cordially discussing music and life in the same high school art class in Vancouver BC, it wasn't until several years later that they bumped into each other at a Lowe's parking lot and teamed up to make the act now known as Bob Moses.
Review by David Jeffries; Score: ****
•♦• Alerting the LP masses to what the EP crowd already knows, Domino Records’ All in All rounds up all the early EPs from Bob Moses, the Brooklyn house music duo who create serene, wistful, and intoxicating post–club numbers. This chilled and well–designed beauty sounds like James Blake, Trentemøller, the first New Order album, and the classic Basic Channel label slowly merged into one. There’s a "band" element as well, as member Jimmy Vallance is the man behind all the blissful music, while Tom Howie handles the subdued and set–back–in–the–mix vocals. "Interloper" is the album’s most "up" track, thanks to some Kraftwerk–styled runs and riffs, and on the other side of the spectrum, there’s "Stealing Fire," a slow and almost beatless song with echoing guitar. The duo thrive in this narrow world, and create many different flavors, with low BPMs and delicate melodies the only constant, and in the case of late-album highlight "I Ain’t Gonna Be the First to Cry," they may have invented the genre of blues–house with Howie delivering the grief and Vallance in full, slinky support. Every groove is allowed to develop and grow as the seven–minute mark is repeatedly crossed, and if there’s a complaint to be made, it’s that the compilation puts the acoustic mix of "Hands to Hold" right next to the regular, since that's the way it was on the original — and DJ–aimed — EP. It's nothing a mouse click or flick of the shuffle button can't fix, and with All in All saving you the trouble of searching out the four EPs, newcomers should consider this a welcome release.
Artist Biography by David Jeffries
•♦• First To Cry Born and bred in Brooklyn, New York but with roots in Vancouver, Canada, the history of Bob Moses is as curious as the cool house music duo's name. Members Jimmy Vallance and Tom Howie knew one another from the Vancouver high school they both attended and were drawn together thanks to a shared love of pop–punk bands like Rancid and Green Day. Adulthood found them both in Brooklyn, with Vallance recording Berlin–styled techno while Howie worked in the realm of the singer/songwriter. Both felt musically stuck and hungered for something new, a problem solved by the simple union of their styles, which created something cool and decidedly "post–club." Named after the urban planner who designed the modern New York City, they became Bob Moses and joined the Scissor & Thread label in 2012 with the EP Hand to Hold. The Far from the Tree EP followed on the label in 2013, then a year later the group released the First to Cry EP on Domino. In 2015, Domino gathered up all the duo’s early EPs for the compilation All in All. •♦• http://www.allmusic.com/
BY TIMOTHY ROSINI; 04. 24. 2015, Rating: 8.5/10
•♦• Canadian born duo Tom Howie and Jimmy Vallance both took separate journeys to New York City where they eventually formed their musical partnership. Hailing from the same high school in Vancouver, Canada the two future Dj’s ended up uniting years later stemming from a chance meeting — leading to the deep–house collaboration known as Bob Moses. After a few EP drops, the one–name duo have released their first full album, All in All. Seamlessly weaving its way through multiple genres, All in All ruminates in the ear, drawing the listener into its dark, atmospheric soundscape and never letting up.
•♦• The duo are quick to credit the city of Vancouver, its artistic culture, and even the weather as inspiration for their sound. Dark winters and cold nights — the city glow of light reflected off snow and ice — the album itself has an isolated wintry feel to it. One could also understand how New York would be an inspiring–worthy substitute to Vancouver in the creation of their eclectic mix of drum and base, house, and sensual songwriting.
•♦• The pace of the album is nearly flawless, with the opener “Far From The Tree” gradually enveloping the listener in a steady burst of beats, synths, and building crescendos. Lyrics echo and fade, providing a perfect tone–setting preview of what to expect on the rest of the album. “Winter’s Song” keeps things smoothly churning — keyboards and synths complement the catchy chorus of lyrics as the steady vacuum–like beat strobes past like street–lights on a dark night.
•♦• By the time the album pulsates its way through the brooding instrumental “Interloper”, it’s easy to see that Bob Moses is much more than bass, synths, and the occasional hook. Their singing–songwriting talent shines through on songs like “Stealing Fire”, “Hands to Hold” “I Aint Gonna Be The First To Cry”, and “Grace” — the latter two previously released together as a single. Even when songs showcase lyrics and structure they never lose that dark, black–lit drum and base feel. Instead the fusion of different elements meld together perfectly. A tinge of Massive Attack, early Paul Oakenfold mixtapes — even elements of Duran Duran congeal into this cauldron of electronic goodness.
•♦• Little guitar riffs are peppered in throughout the album as well, surfacing on songs like “I Aint Gonna Be The First To Cry” and “Stealing Fire”. There is even an acoustic stripped down version of “Hands to Hold” just so they can prove that full instrumentation isn’t a foreign concept.
•♦• All in All is a superbly crafted piece of music. The blend of sounds and styles on this album are magnetically infectious. Bob Moses’ broodingly sensual debut album can take you from the dark corners of a club to cruising down the concrete jungles of the inner city. The production value deserves a nod as well. Each sound comes through crystal clear — solidified bass never overshadowing voice or any of the liquid–like electronic elements on this collection of 12 tracks.
•♦• While it continues finding new ears to infect, it would be hard to understand how All in All won’t propel these two talented musicians to the next level of exposure and notoriety. All in All has something in it for everyone. At times danceable, mesmerizing, as well as introspective — Bob Moses has shown that in a time where innovation can be rare — a fresh take on a familiar style can be sonorously rewarding. •♦• http://survivingthegoldenage.com/
Press: Shelley Wright, Domino Records: firstname.lastname@example.org
Agent: Windish Agency (North & South America, Canada & Mexico): Tom Windish — email@example.com // GEIST Agency: Goli Ghavami (ROW) — firstname.lastname@example.org
•♦• “We were never happy just making music on acoustic guitars,” says Tom Howie of the organic–electronic sound of Bob Moses, the Brooklyn–by–way–of–Canada duo he formed with partner Jimmy Vallance. “Our live show combines what a DJ does with a rock band,” Vallance adds. “Everything flows together in a continuous mix for the dancefloor, but it’s all our own original music, with live vocals and guitar. Then again, we came out of a scene that was trying to change what dance music is — that pushed beyond the expected sonic spectrum.”
•♦• That scene grew around the Marcy Hotel — the revered venue that, in its half decade of existence, proved as important for New York’s contemporary underground dance/electronic music world as CBGBs was for the ‘70s punk era. The acclaimed likes of Soul Clap, Wolf + Lamb, and Nicolas Jaar all gravitated around Marcy’s infamous parties, reimagining dance music in their own groundbreaking image. “We were totally inspired by what was happening at the Marcy. It was a small room, could only hold a couple hundred people tops, but it proved to be such a pivotal place,” Vallance says. “Alongside what other promoters like Resolute and Blackmarket were doing in abandoned warehouses in Brooklyn, New York was an inspiring place to be at the turn of the decade.” Also present was Francis Harris, the iconoclastic DJ/producer and co–founder of tastemaker label Scissor & Thread, which fostered a more personal, homemade take on electronic sounds. After meeting at a studio session for techno mavericks M.A.N.D.Y., Harris, Howie, and Vallance found they shared common ground. “Francis set the road map for the sound we needed to find,” Howie says.
•♦• Howie and Vallance started writing hooks for Harris’ Frank & Tony project, furthering their collaboration. “We didn’t think much of it until we played Marcy with Frank & Tony in 2012,” Vallance recalls. “Tom sang live to the tracks we’d written, and people went insane! We’d never expected that reaction, which made us think we were on to something,” Howie says. “We woke up the next day thinking ‘We have to become our own act.’ We came up with the songs for our first EP, Hands to Hold, and Francis agreed to put it out.”
•♦• Hands to Hold’s infectious title track appeared in two vastly different versions: an electronic mix that combined subtle grooves and tweaked sound design with Howie’s moody vocals, and a drumless acoustic take. Bob Moses upped the anti–genre ante on its next EP, 2013’s Far From the Tree: one track, “Interloper,” was the kind of dark, fractured 4/4 instrumental one might hear at 5:00am on a Berlin dancefloor, while “Stealing Fire” proved a psychedelic downtempo confessional with eerily catchy vocal melodies; the title song, meanwhile, split the difference between those styles. “Out the gate, we wanted to make clear we weren’t just a dance act,” Vallance says.
•♦• Bob Moses received its oddball moniker from Francis Harris in homage to Robert Moses, the urban planner behind iconic New York landmarks like Shea Stadium and the Brooklyn–Queens Expressway. But while NYC is definitely in Bob Moses’ DNA, its members actually met as high school students in Vancouver, Canada. The pair reunited randomly years later when, bumping into each other in a Lowe’s parking lot, they discovered they had studios across the street from each other in Brooklyn’s Red Hook neighborhood. Howie had arrived there after a stint at Boston’s Berklee College of Music, on a partial scholarship as a singer–songwriter. Vallance, meanwhile, had found some success as a producer/engineer/DJ creating commercial dance music — his remix of Sia’s “Buttons” brought him some early attention — but “I’d fallen out of love with making cheesy big–room tracks,” he laughs. “We booked a couple days to write at my studio for fun, and by the end of the week, I told Tom, ‘Come live at my place and let’s do this every day.’”
•♦• Bob Moses is currently crafting its debut album for the group’s new label, Domino. •♦• That’s preceded by a new EP, First to Cry: taking its title from Bob Moses’ blues–meets–deep–house take on “I Ain’t Gonna Be the First to Cry” by R&B legend Bobby ‘Blue’ Bland, it marks Bob Moses as a characteristic addition to Domino’s maverick stable. “We’re massive fans of Domino artists like Four Tet, Caribou, Hot Chip, and Animal Collective, so it just seemed like a natural home for us,” Vallance says. “We feel lucky to be starting this relationship — it’s a big new world.” :: http://schedule.sxsw.com/
|All in All|