Little information can be found on the band Moscow Olympics online, with its minimalistic MySpace page and a bare minimum of information provided by its obscure American label company, Lavender Records. After scouring the Internet, I realized I knew but three facts about the band — Moscow Olympics is a four-man band from the Philippines, and the lack of U.S. buzz surrounding the band betrays its immense talent.
Their debut album, Cut the World, transports listeners into a drifting, and at times discordant, world of enchanting instrumentals and haunting vocals. The seven tracks carry an obvious influence from the ’80s music scene, to the point where an unknowing listener could easily mistake Moscow Olympics as one of the typical shoegaze, post-punk bands from the UK. One blogger, Alistair Fitchett of the blog Unpopular, aptly described the band as “Blueboy leaping from the clouds and snogging The Wake in the sunset whilst drifting down over the Oresund bridge.”
The band rises above your typical dream-pop fanfare, though, with its complex and always evolving instrumentalism. Within each song, layers of guitar, drums and distorted vocals progress at the hands of musically mature artists. In the opening track, “What if Left Unsaid,” a typical guitar melody snowballs into a flawlessly meshed progression of synths and riffs, which is then topped off by the subtle introduction of barely-there vocals. The rest of the tracks follow a similar pattern, although the base guide of the band in no way hinders their originality or musicality. Each song carries its own stylistic flair and unique progressions.
The best track of the album, the self-titled “Cut the World,” builds slowly but surely into a dreamy, effervescent amalgamation of clear, minimalistic guitar chords, heavy reverb, keyboard synths and tremolo vocals. The song never veers off into ambiguously messy sound but stays impressively on track by perfectly balancing instruments, vocals and effects.
Listeners may feel as if they are simply floating up and down through various layers of musicality, fully immersed within the soundscape Moscow Olympics creates so effortlessly.
— By Entertainment Editor