Photo: Victoria Rich
by Erwin A. Karl for URBAN RAG #26

MOTHS (Self Titled) - Wagon Train Records

I must be getting old. When I listened to Moth's CD I felt a nostalgia for the experience of discovering bands like the Replacements or Husker Du for the first time. Moths serve up rich, gravid riffs that are upbeatwitout being syrupy; the vocals range from soulful to whiny without being annoying. Add to this mixture intelligent and funny lyricswhich tackle philosophical issues or celebrate the lives of those in the marging between suburbia and trailer trash, an occasional nod to rockabilly, ripping guitar work and an enchanting Latino track, and you have the makings of a long overdue 'discovery.' if the thrill you felt when you heard Pavement for the first time has worn off long ago, I suggest you pick up the Moths.

MOTHS w/ EIGHTEEN - Live at the Charleston Bar & Grill
Brooklyn, NY - New Year's Eve 1998-9

A nice alternative to being dowsed with cheap champagne and crushed by drunken 20-somethings from New Jersey in the frigid Times Square was the warm ambience of The Charleston. Aneighborhood bar in the front, its back roomfeatured top-notch rock and roll performances from both bands at the New Year's Eve gig. The crowd in both rooms consisted of folks who seem to know each other and the bands - a real friendly atmosphere. After a gratefully short round of noisemakers , hats and streamers, Moths ushered in 1999 with Auld Lang Syne and launched into a tight set showing off their blend of melodic but punchy guitars and clever lyrics. Highlights included 10,000 Rubberbands, Hospital, Hibbing, and Big Mike. Eighteen, which has been a steady fixture at The Charleston for some years, also presented a heavy guitar sound, with metal flavored chord grooves and occasional bits of rockabilly. The band also seemed to share the Moths ironic sense of humor in their lyrics and had the dance floor bouncing during their smoking second set. I was so inspired, I made a resolution to to go see high quality rock and roll acts like Eighteen and Moths rather than standing in the cold to watch flashing balls drop whenever possible.

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