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Moon Letters

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Moon Letters Thank You from the Future album cover
3.95 | 40 ratings | 8 reviews | 23% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2022

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Sudden Sun (4:19)
2. The Hrossa (6:18)
3. Mother River (4:32)
4. Isolation and Foreboding (6:33)
5. Child of Tomorrow (5:27)
6. Fate of the Alacorn (7:06)
7. Yesterday Is Gone (6:47)

Total Time 41:02

Line-up / Musicians

- Michael Trew / vocals, flute, 12-string electric guitar (5)
- Dave Webb / electric guitars, metal toolbox, shovel, Primordial grunts
- John Allday / electric piano, organ, synthesizers, virtual orchestra, vocals, Mercurial chant
- Mike Murphy / electric fretted & fretless bass, vocals, percussion, Earthen grumbles
- Kelly Mynes / drums & percussion

Releases information

Cover: Mariano Peccinetti
Format: CD, Digital
August 8, 2022

Thanks to mbzr48 for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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MOON LETTERS Thank You from the Future ratings distribution

(40 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(23%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(51%)
Good, but non-essential (13%)
Collectors/fans only (10%)
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)

MOON LETTERS Thank You from the Future reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Dapper~Blueberries
4 stars We've looked at many bands and albums over these few months, so let's keep this trend up. I have looked at more gothic bands, most notably Anglagard and Discipline, with both releasing albums that I think are all-time masterpieces. However, I never found a band that was gothic, but with the tempo of more happy bands, such as Moon Safari or Cheeto's Magazine. A more pastel goth band if you will. That is until now. 2022 has been a great year for progressive rock and it just keeps on coming at you with great releases. I doubt that fact will end any time soon but I do think it is worth talking about this album since it has become a bit of a fan favorite for me.

Moon Letters is a Seattle-based supergroup made up of members from bands such as Wah Wah Exit Wound, Spacebag, Panther Attack!, Bone Cave Ballet, and The Autumn Electric, though I am not sure if those are real bands or just made-up names to spark attention. Besides that, little is known about the group besides the fact that they made an album in 2019, Until They Feel The Sun. This sophomore album, Thank You From The Future, was released this year and has gained some notoriety. I heard about it from the Youtuber Notes Reviews, so I'd like to thank them for introducing me to this album because it is great.

The first song of Sudden Sun sets the scene for this album, featuring fast rhythmic guitars and spacey keyboards. These two factors plus the very articulate drumming do bleed some of that more joyous progressive rock moods into my veins. Honestly, it very much reminds me of Cheeto's Magazine, but a lot more hard-hitting and a bit more retro than contemporary. It is genuinely a mood lifter of a song that helps in its presentation. However, I have a problem with how this song is played out. It is a four-minute song, but it feels like it is multiple songs all at once. Now, this wouldn't be an issue, after all, many Prog epics have this sort of thing, the problem is that it's not a Prog epic, it is a four-minute song. I can never get any time to breathe because things change so rapidly that it feels less like a fun rollercoaster. It is like that one ride at a local fair that is supposed to be fun but instead jerks around causing a headache. A song that is fun but insanely chaotic doesn't help it in the long run.

This also applies to The Hrossa. It is a very fun and jovial song, with a tiny hint of what would become the main staple through this album, and that is the more gothic flair added on. However, it does still have that incredibly jerky progression, where one minute it's one thing, and the other is something else. It does try to be a bit more straightened out with the track being 6 minutes instead of 4, but the feelings are still there. These feel like concepts for something greater as a whole due to how they are presented in these differing lights, which is neat, but I do want something a little juicier without being bombarded with nothing but technical skill. There has to be something more.

And we'll get something more with the rest of the album. The first two songs were the appetizer for the main courses, with the first being Mother River. Gone is the overly fast progression; instead, we get that revitalization of that more gothic sound The Hrossa hinted at. Now, instead of just the happier and go-lucky retro progressive rock bands, we get flavors of Discipline and Anekdoten. This one-two punch of the fun and happy side, with the darkness, gives this album a very interesting and flavorful palette to work with. We can also see some very cool space influences. It feels very Syd Barretesque at times, added with the modern skill presented, with the more straightened-out progression and you'll get one great song. It is just a fun time for me to be perfectly honest.

These aspects continue with Isolation And Foreboding, which is probably the only track that is a little less happy, as seen with the title. The first half feels very mysterious, with the bass being at center stage, chugging the sound along this path. At the halfway point the song shifts gears quickly to something a lot more slower and concrete, with an almost psychedelic rock ballad that honestly moves me. It is so delicate, yet I feel like if I tear it apart it could never break. This song's title does not lie, this song does have elements of isolation and foreboding; the first half being that isolation, that mystery, the intrigue, and resolve; the second half being that foreboding, the calm yet so strong movement that sets with you even after the song ends. This has become one of my favorites of this album, and I think it is hard not to see why.

Let us liven up the mood a bit with Child Of Tomorrow. This time we get a bit more of a European-influenced track, with a clear folk identity, but not scraping away their more rock-influenced sound. It is kinda like how Urskog by Kaipa was: a very European-flavored album that hailed its flag in the retro progressive rock scene. However here we get more of that rock emphasis, which I think suits this style well. It is very atmospheric, with visions of green plains and small villages filled with people. I know this will be an odd comparison, but this feels like a Gryphon track, but if it were designed to be less folksy, and a lot more rocking. It is honestly super fun hearing this more green-flavored style of progressive rock put through a new filter.

This album has the best for last, and that is Fate Of The Alacorn. This is the best conclusion the band can make for this album, really satisfying me with a good mix of that jovial sound, that gothic sound, and even a bit of that more Kaipa-influenced retro progressive rock sound thrown into the spin of things. I especially love the ending, how it builds with these horns that go through the wringer by the guitars and drums, creating this moody and intense melody that bleeds into me. It is a track that values what came before, almost like a generation-long tribute to the first, second, third, etc songs. It is satisfying to hear such a good closure on this album?wait what? There's more? What do you mean there's more? One last song?but this is the?oh wait never mind, I guess there is still one more song left to cover.

The REAL final song for this album is Yesterday Is Gone, and to be honest, it's just fine. The track itself is basically what you might expect from this album, especially with how the album sounds, and it does do a good job of keeping the torch lit for a little while longer, but I do feel as though it is severely misplaced on the album. This does not feel like the last track on this album, it feels more suitable for the middle. With it being at the end I feel like this album, while still good, ends less with a bang and more with a whimper. Fate Of The Alacorn left me satisfied, and to be honest I am not hungry enough for dessert, so this track isn't really necessary, at least not necessary to be the final piece on this album.

I'd say if you want more good modern progressive rock you'll come to the right place with this one. It is a flavorful album that features many songs that while short leave a lasting impression on me. I will listen to some of these songs a lot more throughout the next few months because they are excellent in their stature, but some tracks are a bit lesser than those that I praised. This album isn't perfect, but I do think all and all it is a fun time that harkens back to that more fun side of progressive rock, while also adding a bit more edge to the mixer. It is like a dark chocolate cake, it is darker, but still has an aura of happiness.

Review by siLLy puPPy
4 stars Lots off artists barking at the MOON these days. I can't keep track of how many MOON bands there are any longer! There's Moon Safari of course in the prog world but so many more like Moon Goons, Moon Duo, Moon Tan, Moon Phantoms and countless others. Here's yet another one of the newer harbingers of modern retro prog, the Seattle based MOON LETTERS. This band doesn't just copy and paste its prog ethos from the past but rather has constructed an interesting new take on taking something old and reinventing it to suit a newer audience in the modern day and age all the while tamping down the tones and timbres to fit into the old school golden age prog world. So far MOON LETTERS founded and led by guitarist Dave Webb released the debut "Until They Feel The Sun" in 2019 and after receiving warranted kudos for an interesting retro-prog stylistic approach, MOON LETTERS continues and ups its game on its second release THANK YOU FROM THE FUTURE.

This is my first exposure to MOON LETTERS but from what i've read there has been a significant improvement from the debut. This album of seven tracks is retro down to the 41-minute playing time and features elements from many classic prog bands. There's an interesting symphonic prog sound reminiscent of Yes at times and Kansas at others. There are also playful early Spock's Beard vocal antics, Gentle Giant time signature gymnastics and occasional King Crimson styled rocking out. However the one artist that comes to mind more often than others is that there is a clear Mars Volta thing going on here. The juxtaposition of musical elements with the punk rocker's intensity in fully fueled prog time signature splendor was the winning formula for albums like "De-Loused in the Comatorium" and "Francis The Mute." Luckily MOON LETTERS succeeds in finding its own voice.

MOON LETTERS was formed six years ago in 2016 and features some prog veterans including guitarist Dave Webb (Spacebag, Wah Wah Exit Wound), lead vocalist and flautist Michael Trew (Autumn Electric), drummer Kelly Mynes (Panther Attack!, Bone Cave Ballet), bassist Mike Murphy (Authentic Luxury) and keyboardist John Allday (Chaos and Cosmos). The debut "Until They Feel The Sun" was warmly received by the prog world and if it's in the same vein as this new release i can tell why! Add to that a really cool album cover and i'm all in. This is what i call fun prog, that is prog that engages in all the check the box elements like time signature frenzies, extended compositional fortitude and improvisation up the ying yang yet without scarifying that playful melodic sing-songy style that made the 70s bands so cool.

If i had to compare MOON LETTERS sounds like what you would get if you mixed The Mars Volta with Spock's Beard and Magic Pie without really sounding like any of the above but a trained ear can surely detect the influences embedded in every cadence. There have been comparisons to Rush and even Dream Theater but MOON LETTERS is a bit more quirky than Rush and not heavy enough to squeak into the world of progressive metal. Nevertheless there are some Dream Theater keyboard dynamics and as far as excellent musicianship is concerned MOON LETTERS does have the chops to sit side by side with some of the aforementioned greats. What's the most cool about THANK YOU FROM THE FUTURE is the unpredictability of the song structures. While they maintain an infectious melodic accessibility, the band breaks into surprising changes in the regularly scheduled program therefore this is amazingly cool at times!

If you love album's like Spock Beard's debut "The Light" then this is right up your alley. The production is professional crafted and the creativity is firing on all pistons. The musicians are quite talented and showcase an amazing adaptability to improvising in unorthodox ways while holding down the main melodic theme. What's also cool is that no instrument or style is dominant. THANK YOU FROM THE FUTURE is truly the musical equivalent of a kaleidoscope in splendiferous coloration. Definitely more retro than modern sounding but the creativity in how the band revisits classic sounds is nothing short of impressive. Looking forward to more from MOON LETTERS.

Review by kev rowland
4 stars One of the real joys of being around the scene for so long is that I am still contacted by "new" bands who ask me if I would be interested in hearing some of their music, which is how I am now listening to the latest release by Seattle- based quintet Moon Letters. They were formed in 2016 by Dave Webb (guitar), Michael Trew (vocals, flute), Kelly Mynes (drums), Mike Murphy (bass, vocals) and John Allday (keyboards, vocals). Their debut album, 'Until They Feel the Sun', (which was produced by Barrett Jones, (Foo Fighters)), garnered positive reviews and their performance at Seaprog 2019 helped secure a spot at RoSfest 2020. It took a while for them to return with their second album, but now we have 'Thankyou From The Future', which this time was produced by Robert Cheek (Band of Horses).

It is as if the last 40 years has not happened, as we are firmly in the Seventies with some wonderful Mellotrons in the background, and a very retro feel indeed. They are the type of band where one can easily concentrate on just one aspect and then say that is the most important, as every person involved has such a major impact on the overall sound. I have seen them likened to early Spock's Beard in some reviews, but for me that is more about using some of the same influences musically, yet having the togetherness and drama which makes 'The Light' so compelling. Gentle Giant are a huge influence, particularly with the vocals and the interplay, while Yes have also had their part to play, especially with the keyboards, but the guitar has more of a hard rock presence which takes them in a different direction to both.

It is an exciting and vibrant release, one which does not overstay its welcome with a total playing time of less than 42 minutes (so would happily fit on one side of a TDK-D90, as did all the best albums back in the day), and seven songs with nothing too short or overtly long. This is an immediate and compelling album which only gets better the more time it is played, and one can only hope they get the attention they deserve within the scene as this is a delight from beginning to end.

Latest members reviews

4 stars Every once in a rare while, a new band you've never heard of confidently grabs your attention and won't let go. Moon Letters, a humble 5-piece act from Seattle Washington- just independently released their 3rd album. It's interesting how they play with the concept of time in the title: Thank Yo ... (read more)

Report this review (#2968500) | Posted by Prog Dog | Monday, November 13, 2023 | Review Permanlink

4 stars TYFTF is the second studio album by American Progressive rock band Moon Letters. The main characters seem to be Michael Trew on vocals, flute, guitars; Dave Webb on guitars; John Allday on keyboards and synthesizers; Mike Murphy on bass and vocals; and Kelly Mynes on drums and percussion. ... (read more)

Report this review (#2874334) | Posted by ElChanclas | Tuesday, January 10, 2023 | Review Permanlink

2 stars This is a truly commendable record by Moon Letters. Musically, it is sound. I'm sure many prog lovers will be happy to hear this, even to own this. I'm not one of them. I do recognize the interesting song structure, great playing and arrangements. But I do think the lyrics are clunky, the sin ... (read more)

Report this review (#2841283) | Posted by WJA-K | Wednesday, September 21, 2022 | Review Permanlink

5 stars "a resoluteness toward life and love..." Simmering Sophomore Release Seattle's collective progressive musical force, MOON LETTERS, leaves the impression of five seasoned, skilled musicians giving every last ounce of creative, sacred, majestic, melodic musical enchantment in the sculpting of ... (read more)

Report this review (#2841096) | Posted by Steve Conrad | Tuesday, September 20, 2022 | Review Permanlink

5 stars The sophomore release of this band from the USA. As we all know, usually that 2nd release is a bit shaky and undefined, still searching for "their sound." BUT THIS, this new album - "Thank You from the Future" - from Moon Letters is a step up from their magnificent 1st release - "Until They Feel the ... (read more)

Report this review (#2782861) | Posted by tmay102436 | Tuesday, August 9, 2022 | Review Permanlink

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