NZ Post-Rock Band DESBOT Drop Their New Single “Moonlit Forest”

DESBOT 'Moonlit Forest - Single' - Cover Photo

Art As Catharsis is proud to announce the release of Desbot’s first single off Pass of Change, Moonlit Forest

Hailing from Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand, Desbot is the brainchild of Maurice Beckett (Jakob, Without Borders), Tom Pierard (The Modern Beat, Kaleidoscope Carnival) and Nick Blow (Come to Dolly).

With flashes of influence of Mogwai, Isis and Planning for BurialDesbot’s debut full-length, Pass of Change, is an exploration of heavy, progressive post-rock. Featuring hypnotic grooves, unexpected progressions, and a beautiful attention to texture and ambience gives listeners a plethora of reasons to appreciate Pass of Change.

“More than anything, the central theme of Pass of Change relates to our process; it’s essentially a lockdown album that we wrote in isolation, begins drummer Tom Pierard. “Rather than having a premeditated theme the music ends up being a reflection of our combined lived experience – we’ve all had a fairly turbulent time emotionally over the last two years and the music tells that story. Our workflow was to write independently then share sections of demos, then we’d run with each others’ ideas in our own way.” 

“An offshoot of writing ‘in the box’ meant that we got pretty experimental at times, and as a result our overall sound as a band was able to mature and expand into sonic areas we hadn’t used in Occult Tapes (the band’s debut EP). I think our sound is more refined with these tracks, and we’ve each learned a lot about how our individual voices sit within the overall Desbot sound, if that makes sense.”

As the opening track and the first single off Pass of ChangeMoonlit Forest kicks the record off with spacey synthesisers, bounding bass and tight drum hooks. The track progresses into grunting bass riffs and hammering drums before a spiralling synth progression leads the listener into the depths of the track. Built cyclically, Moonlit Forest has all the compositional marks that lovers of post-rock and sludgy music will love – depth, build-up and distortion that leaves an imprint on the ear of the listener. 

“There’s a strong narrative with this track,” says Pierard, “and we all had the same kind of vision of the concept when we first heard it – it’s a bit of a journey from the unknown into a kind of joyful freedom that you might experience from immersion into a wild forest environment. We got pretty bad cabin fever during lockdowns and found ourselves yearning to connect with nature. For us, this song evokes a sense of place, of feeling insignificant compared to the forest, yet strongly connected to it.”

While pandemic constraints caused production delays on Pass of Change, the crisp, tight sounds heard on the record’s final release emphasises the value of patience. Each track contains differences – some subtle, some glaring – making each track on the album worth exploring in continued depth. For lovers of New Zealand’s burgeoning post-rock scene and intricate, lengthy, heavy music, Desbot’s Pass of Change is a must-hear record that will surely leave a mark on the scene.

Desbot’s new single ‘Moonlit Forest’ is out on Art As Catharsis 12 August

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