WARNING: This video may potentially trigger seizures for people with photosensitive epilepsy. View discretion is advised. The slate that opens the new video from Tan Cologne could equally live as a spoken word warning ahead of their audio-only tracks. The light and shade of their music flickers, almost imperceptibly. Tiny triggers, significant reactions occur. Today, they have released, “Strange God”, the third and final single from their upcoming album, Cave Vaults on the Moon in New Mexico.
Tan Cologne is a project of Lauren Green and Marissa Macias. Their debut album is the product of five years, experimentation, exploration, and reflection on their New Mexico environment. It would be easy to file this under ‘dream pop’ but there is something more demanding, more artful, and more full of surprise in the tone of the band.
The poetically weighted title articulates the tonal quality of everything that sits beneath. The music, and its lyrical content are deeply reflective. Like the moon, aspects of what we see are revealed only when the duo cast a spot onto the subject. Lyrically, they get in close. Musically, they create distance.
“Strange God” Echoes the south-west. Shiny guitars hang notes like aspects of a desert haunting. Percussive elements punctuate – there are dusty snares, and subtle distortions that bring grit and low burned heat. Production leans toward the high-end, but there’s still an earthy feel, even in the tinny, rusty drift of high notes.
Why, if god exists would she be strange? Are there aliens in the caves, or over the horizon? Is there something alien in each of us as we listen? Tan Cologne allow themselves to meander around this half-lit landscape, and they enjoy the wonder of the search, more than the discovery of hard facts.
“Strange God” is a deceptively simple track. It suggests good things from the album.
Cave Vaults of the Moon in New Mexico will be released via Labrador Records on February 14. Preorder link below.
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PHOTOGRAPH BY MARISSA MACIAS