Poor Moon is a band comprised of longtime friends Christian Wargo, Casey Wescott, and brothers Ian and Peter Murray. And Poor Moon is the title of their full-length debut. Before there was a band or a record, there was a series of songs forged by Christian Wargo over several years. That’s one of the things that makes Poor Moon sound so special: this band grew out of the songs, not vice-versa.
“I’ve known Christian for so long, and have loved his songwriting as long as I’ve known him,” says Wescott. The two men previously played together in Pedro the Lion and Crystal Skulls; both are members of Fleet Foxes. For the past few years, he and the Murray brothers had been transfixed by the solo recordings Wargo periodically shared with them. “We wanted to be part of that in some way, to help out and be creative.”
Those tasks weren’t as straightforward as they might seem. This isn’t the type of music where you can just throw the players into a practice space, count off the tempo, and viola! The band s attention to detail and affinity for warm, earthy tones makes the music of Poor Moon sound deceptively simple. Assorted timbres decorate these ten originals marimba, harpsichord, fretless zither but this isn’t everything-but-the-kitchen-sink arranging. Thoughtful, impassioned vocal harmonies further reinforce the myriad musical bonds at play.
The songs cover some of the most tumultuous episodes in Wargo’s life, and the album s demos were made in a windowless room by a man subsisting primarily on sweet-and-salty trail mix. Yet Poor Moon handles even the heaviest topics, including death, addiction, and spirituality, with a certain lightness. “The way I deal with those is by drawing attention to the mystery and enjoying the whimsical aspects, but without being cute or precious about it,” Wargo explains.
“There’s often a paradox between what a song sounds like and what we’re actually talking about,” adds Ian Murray. Hence the band’s moniker: “Poor Moon” is the ti