In the year Moon Diagrams began working on his upcoming LP Lifetime of Love, Fergie had four Top 10 hits, the Plain White T’s ruined summer, and Steve Jobs announced the first iPhone. In the 10 years since, Deerhunter has released four albums and Americans have all but forgotten the saccharine strumming of “Hey There Delilah.” Now, Moses Archuleta has finally released the first single, “End of Heartache.” It’s a far cry from his more hypnotic earlier material, but within the realm of dreamy pop, Archuleta unravels typical song structure and weaves in sporadic moments of inspiration which rouse the listener from sun-soaked reverie.
Out of all the side projects from Deerhunter members, Archuleta’s Moon Diagrams is perhaps the most mysterious. When Geographic North released his 2015 EP, Care Package, it was overshadowed by Deerhunter’s “comeback” album Fading Frontier. Yet, for all those paying close attention, the record was a thorough exploration of minimalist techno. “End of Heartache” reveals that even when Archuleta doesn’t stray to the experimental fringes of pop, his songwriting is no less ambitious. The track was written in a period when Archuleta was processing the collapse of his marriage and writing in self-imposed seclusion. Serene chords balance flighty samples, and the celestial result keeps the darker emotional trappings from sinking the track altogether.
It’s easy to hear the glitzy echoes of the time Archuleta spent touring with Ariel Pink within the sultry pacing of the track, but amidst the glamour there’s a detail-oriented introspection which clarifies his aeonian vision. It’s this persistent devotion to Lifetime of Love over the past decade which gives “End of Heartache” the enchanting authenticity most pop tracks never achieve.
Lifetime of Love will be released June 30 via Geographic North in the US and Sonic Cathedral in the UK/EU.