A film about Northwest hip-hop from 2017
On the opening lines of Moonshine, Cosmos frontman Campana spits, “Just about a year ago, they didn’t know my name and now… I gotta hunch that we’re gonna be colossal.” In September, the group traveled to Paisley Park, MN—Prince’s former estate—to represent the hopes of all Seattle at the national Musicology competition. This was just the latest step on the ladder for a band that crushed the competition at 2016’s Sound Off! battle of the bands. This 2017 mixtape, Moonshine, pulls together a mosaic of influences. While listening, I wrote this perplexing scribble: “math-rock Northern Soul EDM dance jazz rap.” They knit together this wide range of influences into a unified, singular sound. There’s so much sonic goodness to savor here, from the Hendrix guitar axe crash on opener “North Star,” to the house club dub of “Mixed Signals,” or the gorgeously weird moments in “To The Moon” and “Silver Lining.” There’s also a smart choice of featured contributors, including Parisalexa and MistaDC, two talents whose star power has been rising all year. This is shake-your-booty music, channeling all the energy of a live five-piece band, while also engaging in advanced studio trickery. Cosmos’s live shows, such as the 4/20 launch party that kicked off this record, are a highly recommend experience. These guys are destined for big things. That opening hunch ain’t so far off.