Mars Or The Moon
Perfect Love has no fear. So says St. John the Revelator. MARS OR THE MOON fearlessly tackles the theme of Love on their Indie500 records debut CD entitled, “The Price of Love”. The 11 songs on the CD richly explore and expound upon the verities of Love.
From the opening track, Ray, written as part homage to Ray LaMontange and part homage to Aslan the Lion, the song reminds the listener that they were “here to shed light and to put up a fight…” even while questioning “Who’s gonna SAVE me…”. A song about standing up fearlessly for your self while serving others. Musically it’s bright like the sunlight rising on a fresh new day, you are starting to wake up and it’s going to be a good day.
Next up is Hold Back a River. It’s a little darker, some would say hauntingly beautiful. The pain that you feel from a relationship ending, reflections on how parts of your life are over, never coming back, and there is nothing you can do to change it. Laments of “I’d hoped to do better for you and I wish you had done better for me, although I know it never was your intention to cause such misery…” the singer questions ‘Can you Hold Back a River, Can you hold back yourself…” Should you? There has been a change that doesn’t feel like it’s for the best “what used to taste like sweetness is now bitterness to me/ you used to take me higher now you’ve brought me to my knees…”
Sexing the Cherry captures the joy of friendships. Those seemingly ordinary days that are filled with the simple magic of just enjoying being. When that happens, Time Stands still. The fall of Snowflakes, the smell of wood smoke, Cats jumping , sharing wine. From Joy we derive strength, “I’ve spent a lifetime running and I don’t care anymore…” Everything is gonna be alright.
Peace is a bittersweet triumph. It’s about putting into practice the life lessons that a mentor has taught you about being true to yourself and your voice, only to have the mentor recoil at the fullness of all that they had helped you to become. “You showed me the way to find hope in the day…” Being true to yourself in the face of powerful disapproval.
Little Stew is snotty, punk aggression and humor. Your love has left and you want to kick the butt of the new ‘significant other’. It is also trying to warn the ‘new love’ that they will be ‘old hat’ soon enough.
The title track, The Price of Love, is the depths that we sometimes go through when we are drawn to the darkness of a relationship that we know is doomed from the start, yet we are compelled beyond reason to go there anyway. Melodically the song seems ancient and new at the same time. Folky and Psychedelic. “She Said No Well could hold the tears that I would shed…” and “She would leave me alone with Death and Lost would be the way… Who would pay this price for love?” We all have.
This Beautiful World is deceptive in it’s musically upbeat country flavor that belies the lyrics telling the tale of a person who has found it too painful to stay living. The Narrator is wishing they could find some way to bring you back to see this beautiful world you left behind.
The Light captures the intoxicating feelings of being completely in love and alive. The Beloved becomes “my morning star, the midnight song that I sing, the breath of my prayers…The Light from which I see.” A classic jam in the vein of the Black Crows, “Seeing things for the first time” or a Gospel Janis Ballad.
Shanti Shakti are the names given to the masculine and feminine energies of Divinity in Hindu mythology. This song is about striving for consciousness and transcendence in the midst of your primary love relationship unraveling. It hits hard like the Red Hot Chili Peppers or the Smashing Pumpkins falling over some Crazy Horse chord changes. “All I know is that I’m sick of trying…” to make things work. To be conscious, to be with you.
Disgrace is about loving yourself enough to get out of a relationship that is killing your spirit. Musically it’s foreboding, like a jazz ballad on the edge of a storm. Like a modern Billie Holiday, jamming with Morcheeba. Ebows and hammond organ enhance the sparse acoustic guitar.
Finally the CD ends with Honeywine. A Tom Waits inspired ballad with the ghosts of Lover’s past haunting the headspace of the narrator. The saw evokes mournful sounds that compliment the lyrics of regret, shame, and longing perfectly.