Photos + Review: Moon Hooch at The Casbah (San Diego,CA)

Elena Shirin (Austria, E.U.), Lavender Fields (Los Angeles, CA), and Moon Hooch (Brooklyn, NY)
March 17th, 2019
The Casbah in San Diego, CA
Review By: Matthew J. Kelley // Photos by: Fatima Kelley

I’d heard about Moon Hooch from my wife who had a really fun experience photographing them back in 2015 at the 91X Fest in San Diego – and possibly every other time they came to town since.  So when the opportunity to review the show came my way I eagerly agreed.

In the late 90’s-early 2000’s, I lived in Chicago and was turned on to a lot of electronic music.  A buddy of mine is an electronic music junkie and I got exposed to a bunch of stuff I never would have been exposed to otherwise. I met a bunch of people I never would have met and went to a lot of really cool and fun shows and parties (thanks Robert!) -crazy parties like Even Furthur, an annual three-day Drop Bass Network Records party thrown on farm land in Wisconsin, but I digress.  Everything from drum & bass to ambient trancy stuff to heavy thumping hardcore.  If it wasn’t for Squarepusher I may not have ended up marrying my wife.  I liked a lot of it, some of it not so much, but always gave it a chance.  I went to this Moon Hooch show with that same open mind and eagerness to hear something new and fun.

The first opener Elena Shirin was quite experimental.  Her lyrics came between some pretty unexpected changes in sounds, rhythm, and tempo of her music.  She was joined by a guest who had a guitar running through some gear and made some pretty interesting sounds.

The second opener, Lavender Fields got her gear thumping right from the start.  She had a bunch of gear including a Moog -I love the Moog, and other instruments like a guitar and electric recorder.  I really enjoyed the beats and the heavy-heavy vibrate-your-guts type of bass.  Lyrically, I was taken back to my Grateful Dead days sitting around a campfire listening to free flowing acid induced hippie jams.  It was quite a combination. Fun.

The energy was high, the crowd was certainly ready for Moon Hooch as it was made obvious by the screaming fans.  I found myself packed in front of the stage on the right hand side.  I have to say that when my wife first was trying to explain Moon Hooch I just couldn’t picture it.  I kept thinking techno horns?  What I found was horns being played in a very unique and complimentary way with the electronic gear they were using which included a Moog, again, love the Moog, and James Muschler on drums. I oftentimes couldn’t believe Muschler was keeping some of the beats he was keeping.  It was intense.  And just when you thought you’d heard every sound possible the shit would start thumping again and mesmerizing sounds would come sometimes just crying out of those horns.  These guys were a lot of fun to see perform.

Tune in, turn on, Drop Bass!


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