As soon as you hit play on Moon Loves Honey’s debut record You Drift Away From Me there is an instant tilt in the atmosphere. The world’s axis seems to turn slightly, causing a slight dizziness. A woozy high envelopes your head and all seems mildly good once again in the world, even if for just the length of a record. The Danish dream pop/psych pop band is the brainchild of one man band Jeppe Dengsø. Dengsø started writing and recording the debut full-length in May of 2016. His acute attention to detail made this process a long and tedious one, but one that pays off well. You Drift Away From Me is a beautifully put together piece of dream pop heaven, and could very well be your favorite summer musical affair.
The album opens on the dreamy and druggy “To Be With You”, a slice of modern shoegaze in the vein of Young Prisms and Wild Nothing. There’s a wavering guitar line that also makes one pine for those classic Cocteau Twins albums of yore. Jeppe Dengsø’s voice is soothing with a nice falsetto that seems to absorb into the overall sonics. “Lonely Day” is a cleverly put-together slice of 80s synth radio fun. Dengsø is borrowing some of Kevin Parker’s studio tricks on this slickly produced song. If you’re going to take notice of someone, Kevin Parker is a great one to take notice of. “You Drift Away From Me” seems to convey the feeling of losing someone close to you through the cavernous reverb that coats the vocals, as if the singing is taking place in the back of your mind.
Elsewhere, “Is It Just A Dream?” has a shoegaze quality to it in the Ride-like guitar and heavily-affected vocals. There’s a real driving feel in the bass and drums, too. “Before I Crash” blends distorted guitar and synths well, while the vocals have a Diiv feel to them. The vibe of this album is very Captured Tracks via 2012. The New York label was putting out great shoegaze/dream pop records by Wild Nothing, Craft Spells, Diiv back then, and You Drift Away From Me captures that vibe incredibly well. It all comes to an end with the hypnotic “Replaced”. Dreamy vocals echo on as programmed rhythms carry the song into the ether. The songs seems to implode into a thousand sighs, like Brian Wilson disintegrating into the milky way.
Jeppe Dengsø, aka Moon Loves Honey, keeps things generally light on this debut. The psychedelic undertones aren’t counter-culture, but rather have the feeling of slight dazed comtemplation; looking across a body of water at sunset longing for someone not there. Or even the distant stare during a conversation you’re not quite paying attention to while in it. Moving along through the day-to-day while still fully aware that something, or someone, is missing from it. Moon Loves Honey’s debut was born out of distance between two close friends, and yet there’s a hopefulness to the melancholy. You Drift Away From Me, despite the sadness, banks on the hope that the friend will eventually drift back.
7.7 out of 10