Following his magnificent debut Aromanticism (our #13 favorite album of 2017) and his 4-track remix Make Out in My Car: Chameleon Suite, idiosyncratic indie artist Moses Sumney is back with his second EP of 2018.
Taking its name from a 1975 Mark Rothko painting, Sumney says Black in Deep Red, 2014 was inspired by the “first and last time” he attended a protest, and all three songs speak to that theme with a beautiful but bleak tone. Short opener “Power?” captures the energy of a community march, as an inspired chant of “power to the people” morphs into a dark and skeptical “Do we have power?”
Highlighting Sumney’s trademark expressive moaning, “Call-to-Arms” features a highly-orchestrated jazz freakout that could slide onto a Kamasi Washington record undetected. “Rank & File,” a recent staple of his live shows, is a haunting track about military mindlessness fueled by fire-and-brimstone gospel.
At just 9 minutes of music, Black in Deep Red, 2014 is a powerful and tantalizingly short listen that leaves you salivating for more. We’ll take all we can get from Moses.
Ryan is a writer, editor and vinyl collector currently based in Los Angeles. He started Mini Music Critic in 2017.