Sonarpilot – Mothership (CD)

Very few albums are able to keep listeners compelled and actively interacting with a band or individual throughout every single cut. Even albums seen by many to be nigh-perfect, like the Smashing Pumpkins’ “Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness” or the Mothers of Invention’s “Freak Out!”, have a few tracks that fail to deliver. Sonarpilot’s Mothership is one of the few double albums cut in the last five or ten years that is able to keep listeners’ attentions throughout while allowing Michael Moppert the freedom necessary to lets his creative wings soar. This is done not by three minute polished bits of pop pablum, but rather through expansive compositions that are in themselves pieces of the larger work. “Mothership” begins with the aptly-named “First Contact”, a track that fuses together “Trans-Europe Express”-era Kraftwerk with newer artists like Plastikman and even dance acts like Darude.

While there are different movements in each of these compositions, Sonarpilot’s strengths lay in the cohesion that each track has. There is differentiation between each of the 11 compositions here enough that listeners will know what track they are listening to, even if it stretches 13 (“Celtic Lounge”), 16 (“Snowstar”), or even 23 (“First Contact”) minutes. “Voodoo Logic” has a darker, more tribal feel than anything else on the disc. The sea change that listeners experience between “First Contact” and it is important, not only to refresh listeners’ palettes but also to establish Moppert as a master of all domains. “Snowstar” has a more upbeat feel than “Voodoo Logic” despite keeping a fair dollop of the tropical feel of the earlier track.

As a listener familiarizes themselves more with “Mothership”, they are able to see that, despite the considerable differences that exist between the different tracks, that there is some sort of masterstroke taken by Moppert that creates a cohesive unit out of these different colored, shaped, and angled blocks. While there are no vocals or other ancillary distractions to be had, Sonarpilot’s Mothership is an album that will require a multitude of listens to begin to understand what Moppert has laid out for us. Buy the album when it is released this June and begin to take in what all is present.

Top Tracks: Snowstar, Lava
Rating: 8.0/10

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