To hear Eva Moolchan dissect language, you’d think it’d be easy. Get a drum machine, get a synthesiser, play the bass like a badass. “Their soul’s in their feet.” You give praise to the formula, she says on the test tube jam opener “Inside Edition” - not the pop-punk three-step method or any other well-trod shortcuts, but more like the equation for velocity or centripetal force.
As Sneaks, Moolchan achieved alone on her debut Gymnastics what hundreds of bands do not – a new logic. She made Pylon look old (or, at the very least, their fans), ESG crass, and Gang of Four static. It’s A Myth picks up exactly where that sensation left off, with barely 20 minutes of grooves and Dadaist word play to match Gymnastics’ hypnotic pull. Novelty isn’t the word for what hasn’t faded – what still pervades Sneaks is the rhythm of words, assembled for the sake of rhythm’s sake. “Plastic dinosaurs and hot dog buns / strawberry strategically placed – woop! ”. If I could reproduce that line with half the cool that Moolchan breathes into it, I’d have 50 boyfriends by now.
You could say Sneaks is in a locked groove, for not too much has changed since Gymnastics. More synthesisers broaden the pallet, but the attention to dictation remains the same. Still, check 'Not My Combination', where the shifty factory of beats complements Moolchan’s wary whispered refrain of “tic tac toe, three in a row / not my combination” She’s always been a ninja poet, but this is, like, laser-dodging, bank-breaking levels of stealth. And then there’s 'With A Cherry on Top', a space-pad-suave theme ideal for, say, a grown-up club where everyone stares at a boulder on stage and pretends to philosophise the entire time, while you’re trying to find the lady that sells hallucinogenic street food. That is to say – Moolchan’s writing is so effortlessly absurd, that you don’t realise how ridiculous it is until you step away and try to describe it to someone else.
And really, you can’t fault Sneaks at all for rocking more bass-and-fake-drum jams – because, FUCK, how great are these jams? One of Moolchan’s catchiest grooves is on the insecurity behind posturing, the cheekily slick 'Hair Slick Back': “you think you’ve got a lot to say / you think you need a bigger stage”. That’s the best part about Sneaks – while the grooves and wordplay might seem oblique and hipper than thou, Moolchan actually touches on slices of life that other dude-weary listeners can relate to. Dig how succinctly she conveys the dizzying conundrum of desire in 'PBNJ': “something about you / gets me up on my feet / I’m spinning around / stop staring at me”. Plus, she pulls in live drums for the first time on 'Act Out', which is just all kinds of wicked, and needs to happen more often.
Try and poke a hole in It’s A Myth, and Moolchan will poke ya back. It can’t be done. Not only does Sneaks survive the sophomore slump, she dances circles five circles round it without ever (EVER) skipping a beat. Gymnastics’ one flaw was homogeneity, a disappointing de ja vu by the halfway mark; here, Moolchan kicks that to the curb, especially with curveballs like the 20-second synth flutter of 'Daffodils' and the aforementioned 'With A Cherry On Top'. No buts about it: Sneaks is killin’ it right now, and if you don’t get on top of these grooves today, you’ll be eating her dust in a few years.
9Lee Adcock's Score