Album: Pink Lemonade by Closure in Moscow
Released: May 19th, 2014
Closure in Moscow is an Australian progressive rock band from Melbourne, Victoria that formed in 2006. Comprised of guitarist-singer Mansur Zennelli, guitarist Michael Barrett, drummer Salvatore Aidone, bassist Duncan Millar, and lead singer Christopher De Cinque, Closure in Moscow are noted for their vivacious live performances and eclectic use of differing styles of music. They have released two studio albums and their most recent, Pink Lemonade, was released in 2014.
**Spoiler Alert – Story Details Ahead**
The Story and the Songs:
“The Fool” introduces the main character of the album with a goofy tone, evoking the surface level intentions of the Fool who coasts through life seeking selfish pleasure. Clapping and syncopated rhythms punctuated by harmonious vocals start the album off on its esoteric way. As the Fool walks along, he comes upon the Alchemist who promises a journey like no other in the title track, “Pink Lemonade.” Coming in at over eight minutes, “Pink Lemonade” imparts its importance on the album with proggy guitar riffs and funky bass-lines as the Alchemist warns of the side-effects. Upon imbibing the pink potion, the Fool sees the oracle; a visage of beauty who coerces him into her enticing clutches.
The 70s swagger of “Pink Lemonade” is shaken apart with the cacophonous beginning of “Neoprene Byzantine.” The Fool finds Verina, a 17-year-old, time-traveling Byzantine Empress that has had cosmetic surgery to replace her skin with neoprene plastic in a bid to be desired and feel validated. The track’s ludicrous lyrical content is paralleled by the aggressive drive of drums and hi-hat with bluesy guitar stabs. The catchiest track on the album, “Seeds of Gold,” jams in with dance-able rhythms in contrast with the what the lyrics portray. The Fool has had his use of Verina and dumps her by the wayside; the Fool continues on his journey into the existential funk of “That Brahmatron Song.” He contemplates his path so far before encountering the Brahmatron, a universal entity that sends him through different realities before dropping him into the prehistoric age. This track begins with a funky verse and chorus before a change occurs with industrial percussion and vocals that sound filtered through a megaphone mark the Fool’s passage through realities. “Dinosaur Boss Battle” is very much in the name, although this battle is between dinosaurs and cyborgs (was that not in the history books?). The dinosaurs in this reality never went extinct and are hunted for their bones. This is another funky jam evocative of the 70’s with heavily featured basslines and chunky guitar.
When a bomb goes off nearby during the battle the Fool is watching, he is sent to another reality and as he travels through a tendril of space-time, “Mauerbauertraurigkeit” expresses his lament for Verina. Taking a mysterious tone with more subdued percussion and cleaner guitar tones, the song fits the Fool’s recollections and realizations as he floats into a white light before hearing church bells. The Fool arrives at “The Church of the Technochrist” which is holding a service and promises salvation to those who will plug into a universal port (and pay a nominal fee). The Fool recounts his journey as disco guitars and a straightforward drum beat shuffle in the background. As the Fool begins to integrate, he realizes that not all is as it seems and before he can be dragged into the cult, unplugs to be sent back into a transitional state of oblivion. “Beckon Fire” expresses the Fool’s regrets and wishes of a different outcome before he finally awakes to see Verina in “Happy Days.” Realizing that he had a bad trip from drinking the pink lemonade, he understands that he had been seeking out only surface pleasure and a falsified enlightenment as the penultimate track strikes a triumphant and catchy tune. And if the album wasn’t weird enough, “ピンクレモネード” is the final song which recounts the themes of the album that is sung in Japanese with an 8-bit accompaniment. Yep.
Pink Lemonade is a prog-rock masterpiece that does justice to its influences. The band’s preceding album, First Temple, had more of a post-hardcore feel and this album’s release and change in the band’s sound were a bit jarring for some fans to handle. However, the songwriting and variety on the album work in conjunction to tell an intriguing, if not exactly typical, story. The songs on the album stand on their own, but work best as a united piece of music and art. I want to make sure to mention that all lyrical interpretation was taken from genius.com which, I believe, was written by the band.
Please enjoy some song recommendations, a song from the album, and check out the band’s social media accounts below!
Song recommendations: “Pink Lemonade” , “Seeds of Gold” , “The Church of the Technochrist” , “Happy Days”