Liela Moss: Who the Power (Bella Union) Review | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
Thursday, September 24th, 2020  

Liela Moss

Who the Power

Bella Union

Sep 11, 2020 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share


Best known as the voice of UK alt-rockers The Duke Spirit, Liela Moss’ second solo album Who the Power is a suitably spirited and dramatic affair. Working alongside her partner, producer, and Duke Spirit bassist Toby Butler, Moss eschews the intimate dream-pop of her debut solo album My Name Is Safe in Your Mouth for something much more powerful.

Moss may have recorded Who the Power in a home studio but throughout, the album is imbued with stadia filling power and intensity. The walls of icy atmospheric gothic synths do induce a slightly retro vibe on some tracks but it’s the subject matter and Moss’ always compelling vocals that ultimately ensure the album sounds fresh vibrant and forward-looking. It opens with the driving “Turn Your Back Around” which avoids sounding like a clichéd synth pop-rocker or straying into Pat Benatar territory due to the passion of Moss’ delivery and some nimble wordplay. The brooding “Watching the Wolf” about “a power-hungry narcissistic wannabe politician,” is dramatic, angry, and full of creeping menace but it’s not until former single, the superb “Atoms At Me” that the album really hits its stride. It’s a track that is a “call to free the senses from the call to consume” and perfectly showcases Moss’ ability to weave her dark impassioned spell to beguile the listener.  

“Always Sliding” could soundtrack a gothic western, whilst “White Feather” is a glorious spiralling synth-pop song that returns to the theme of predatory behaviour. The album closer “Stolen Careful” has Moss in a more reflective mood, her voice complemented by shimmering atmospheric synths. Essentially Who the Power adroitly demonstrates that Moss still possesses one of the most dramatic and captivating voices on the UK music scene. She can sound imperious, warm, seductive, passionate, and angry and against the backdrop of cool atmospheric throbbing synth flourishes and propulsive beats she brings power, passion, and warmth to proceedings. (www.lielamoss.com)

Author rating: 7/10

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Average reader rating: 6/10



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