[Review] Moon X – ZAP!

Moon X is an American Progressive Rock project with references to Jazz and Space Rock, composed of members of The Muffins and Moon Men. Their debut album “Zap!” it was released on January 07, 2022 and contains 9 tracks ranging from 1 to over 7 minutes. The album opens with the title track “ZAP!” which begins with a spoken vowel that introduces us with amusing affections to listening, and then immediately gets to the heart with elaborate plots. A tight and intricate drumming, enriched by tempo changes and technical mixes between keyboards and winds are the trademark of their sound. The instrumental excursions enhance the individual technique of the artists involved with solos that intertwine guitar, winds and keyboards, a very engaging track. The following “Yggdrasil” always presents elaborate sounds, with a heavier touch given above all by the guitar distortion, getting closer to the Prog sounds. The rhythm is slower than the previous one, with the lead guitar in evidence in the first part, and then leaving room for the winds in the central part. In the finale the track closes with a more Ambient sound, enriched by a nice use of effects. “Interview with a Hooman” is a short interlude with a spoken vowel, which softens the tones between songs. Continuing on harsher sounds “Man of Tomorrow” has a darker atmosphere than the previous ones, with driving bass lines and the intertwining of guitar and winds. With a solid and rhythmic drumming the track develops between distorted guitar inserts, keyboards and winds with sounds enriched by a good use of effects. In the central part the textures become more intricate and the dark touch becomes more marked, with tempo changes and a solo full of effects that leads us to the conclusion. “Invisible Man” begins with hypnotic repeated sounds and intricate textures, softer than the previous one, with guitar and keyboard in evidence and the bass intertwined. In the central part the intensity increases and the piece becomes more elaborate, with a good guitar solo, in the second part the flute gives a pastoral touch to the sound, softer and more Symphonic. Another interlude “Pickman’s Brew” features the sounds of sea waves and a spoken vocal. “La Lune et son Histoire” again features darker sounds, with intricate guitar and keyboard textures and an effects background with minimal drumming. The more experimental traits mix with the personal touch of the band, creating a very elaborate and complex track, with refined sounds. A heavy riff opens “Trouble in Ranagar” and then with the entry of the other instruments develop a track with complex and elaborate sounds with the guitar as protagonist. At 2 minutes, the winds begin and after a part with more intense sounds, it is transformed into the second with a percussive drumming on the toms. The longest running track “March of the Moon Shadows” closes the album and opens with an intertwining of wind and guitar melodies and a softer sound with a Jazzy touch. The horns are in evidence, offering a prolonged solo insert that accompanies us for almost the entire piece, with more Jazzed references that mix with the Prog. The intensity is constant throughout the track, which closes with a piano loaded with effects. A good album that mixes Prog traits with marked Jazzy references and forays into Experimentation, with lots of individual technique and original ideas. The personal touch of the band is felt and manages to give an imprint to the sound, where all the instruments manage to be enhanced thanks to a good performance of all the artists involved. A listening recommended for lovers of the more complex and Jazzy sounds of Prog, a band that has its own personal sound, enriched by good technique on all instruments.


01. ZAP! (03:42)
02. Yggdrasil (04:56)
03. Interview with a Hooman (01:10)
04. Man of Tomorrow (04:10)
05. Invisible Man (05:14)
06. Pickman’s Brew (01:11)
07. La Lune et son Histoire (05:19)
08. Trouble in Ranagar (05:51)
09. March of the Moon Shadows (07:19)


Dave Newhouse (The Muffins, Diratz, Moon Men, Manna/Mirage) / Woodwinds, Flute, Keyboards, Voice
George Newhouse / Drums
Jerry King (Cloud Over Jupiter, Moon Men, Manna/Mirage) / Guitars, Bass, Trombone, Voice

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Author: Jacopo Vigezzi

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