Photo by Matt Otto MOJO FILTERS
self-titled 4-song demo
Contradiction comes cheap and easy in OC, so don't even blink when we tell you that soul band Mojo Filters is really a bunch of UC Irvine alums—and if sterile, vacuum-sealed Irvine is now breeding soul bands, we should probably get ready for gay-positive folk/polka from Huntington or something, too. Well, okay, they're not exactly soul, not quite like the Stax or Motown stuff: instead, these kids are just rolling in retro on this solid-if-a-little-timid demo CD, with an Anglophiliac mid-'60s mod-style take on soul that plays like an American take on a British take on a bunch of American bands that never got their due in the first place. (Case in point: did Arthur Lee hear them sing, "You come in colors/That's your trait" when the Filters opened for Love two weeks ago? And if so, was he flattered or litigious?) Small Faces are all over this; ditto a little early Who and Stones. And the production is great, even on the two live tracks; Justin Molnar's warbling organ runs are the secret weapon every band should have; and the songs are put together without any fatty bits to clog things up. It's just that the kick-in-get-down! parts are a little slow and scarce: more rock and less roll, maybe? Because the Mojo Filters do the slow burn with panache, but it sounds like there's an explosion percolating somewhere in there, too—even if nobody's set it off yet. But seriously, guys: stay in touch.
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