The needle in your skin won't bring you closer to God / I watch as your head turns full circle
. As a recovering and relapsing drug addict, Dark Eyes
begins as a reminder of all those war stories. Through beautifully woven acoustics and quite the memorable hook, "Full Circle" begins Half Moon Run's excellent (albeit non-overwhelming, though they do sound very layered for only a 3piece) debut slyly avoids mostly all modern indie pitfalls. By incorporating heartfelt folk melodies and quick little bursts of jammin', as well as vocal harmonies to die for, Dark Eyes
manages to sound original and catchy. The marriage of spaced out indie rock/pop and folk sensibilities isn't anything new (Fleet Foxes do this kind of stuff, but not as atmospheric) yet Half Moon Run make it work with a sense of confidence in their hooks, everything delivered deliberately and with power. "Call Me In The Afternoon" wouldn't sound out of place on another fantastic Canadian album of 2012, Pop Friend's Earth To Friend
, what with its sunny beauty being pummeled by emotion.
Ultimately the 2nd half of Dark Eyes
is weak compared to the memorable, pungent 1st. The album is sawed in half by the soulful masterpiece in the middle: "Need It" is beautiful, its melodies soaring in the most subtlest way, its verses dripping in mood. "Drug You" also highlights the back-end, its constant pulsing sounding like the album is about out of gas and out of its mind. From there on Dark Eyes
doesn't really surprise anymore, and the album comes to a screeching halt. There's some amazing music here though - a passionate voice, a deeply moody ride left in the dust of 2012.