words by tom johnson
photograph by andie riekstina
On one hand, it feels almost cruel to listen to John Moods in the current climate given how woozily romantic his work is and how pertinently that ties in with ideas of travel and discovery, of new horizons. On the other hand, perhaps we all need a momentary escape, even if it’s just for the fleeting three minutes of time that his latest song exists within in.
Streaming below here from today, “Without You” is the latest, subtle glimpse into Moods’ forthcoming new EP (So Sweet), which acts as the first half of a brand new LP (So Sweet, So Nice) to be released later this year. It follows 2018’s The Essential John Moods, his debut album under this new moniker, which followed a number of years spent in the Berlin indie-pop band Fenster. Essential was indeed just that, a masterpiece of warm pop music which still sits as a genuine hidden gem of a record, and So Sweet, So Nice continues his knack for crafting effortless, completely absorbing textures.
“Without You”, the second single to be released from the project, is beautifully indicative of his style, a heady blend of retro aesthetics and magical songwriting that immediately carries you off somewhere else entirely. Amid the usual glittering musical backdrop also lies a guest appearance from TOPS’ guitarist David Carriere who gently weaves his own playing into the mix.
“Without You was inspired by Randy VanWarmer’s ‘Losing Out On Love’, a song I became obsessed with because of its overall euphoric feeling,” John Moods says of the new single. “I wrote this song just when David Carriere from the great Canadian band TOPS happened to be in Berlin and I invited him to play on it. He instantly came up with the great addition of the guitar riff and we had a fun time performing it together once at a festival in Berlin. I love that it’s got a one-note chorus and I enjoy the fact that it’s a sad and strange song that sounds really happy.”
Sad and strange indeed, but with a little glimmer of hope on the horizon, “Without You” feels quietly, tenderly, like a revelation. Check it out below right now; the So Sweet EP arrives April 16th via Arbutus Records.
A Music Journal ~ Issue 8
Our Curious Printed Magazine
preorder now // visit the gfp store