Mobius Band

  • Mobius Band
  • Two EP (self-released) 2001 
  • Three EP (Prescription Rails) 2002 
  • City Vs Country EP (Ghostly International) 2005 
  • The Loving Sounds of Static (Ghostly International) 2005 

Mobius Band is Ben Sterling (vocals, guitar, synthesizer), Peter Sax (vocals, bass, synthesizer) and Noam Schatz (live and electronic drums). With producer Peter Katis (Interpol, Guster, Philistines Jr.) at the controls, the group’s debut album, The Loving Sounds of Static, dusts formulaic indie-rock with a subtle digital sheen. Although the results are uneven, in places this cross-pollination uses mildly idiosyncratic elements to highly infectious ends. “Detach” is an exercise in pop minimalism with a nagging, pulsing dial-tone groove that evokes the Penguin CafĂ© Orchestra’s “Telephone and Rubber Band.” The trio expands that pop component with moderate success on the radio-ready teen angst send-up “I Just Turned 18” (“Let ’em get you down, don’t make no decisions / Mope around the house, make a new incision”) and the catchy “Radio Coup,” whose rigid, driving beats, resonant bass line and guitar melody place the song somewhere between Joy Division and Blondie. While there’s a rather clinical, precise feel to much of this material, “You’re Wrong” bucks the trend slightly with its harsher, Sonic Youth-ful edge. Overall, though, The Loving Sounds of Static falls disappointingly flat. Its electronic nuances flash sparks of originality but, for the most part, the record ends up sounding like tired old indie-rock-as-usual.

[Wilson Neate]