Liela Moss - My Name Is Safe In Your Mouth - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Liela Moss - My Name Is Safe In Your Mouth

by James Weiskittel Rating:9 Release Date:2018-11-09
Leila Moss - My Name Is Safe In Your Mouth
Leila Moss - My Name Is Safe In Your Mouth

Liela Moss has spent the last fifteen years establishing herself as one of the preeminent voices in the indie-rock scene. As the singer for London’s The Duke Spirit, Moss has drawn well-deserved comparisons to the likes of Elizabeth Fraser and Patti Smith over the course of the band’s numerous releases. And with her latest solo release, My Name Is Safe In Your Mouth, Moss has managed to craft an album that both intrigues and satisfies.

Co-written and produced with fellow Duke Spirit guitarist Toby Butler on their “own schedule and across all seasons,” My Name Is Safe In Your Mouth checks all the boxes. The record is a satisfying mix of both accessible and unfamiliar; an enjoyably challenging album that will captivate new listeners while posing little risk of alienating fans of her prior work.

The lead single “Wild as Fire” plays to Moss’ strengths as a singer and lyricist, showcasing her rich, haunting vocals and imagery-laden lyrics to great effect. Meanwhile, the rearview-mirror melancholy of “Memories and Faces” and the slow-burn charm of “Subequal” only serve to further underscore Moss’ brilliant use of minimalist percussion and sweeping cinematic strings. A pair of mid-tempo numbers (“New Leaves” and “Moon”) serve as b-side highlights while the epic, album-closing “Hidden Sea” is one of the best things Moss has ever lent her voice to period.

While long-time fans may miss some of the amped-up overtones that characterized much of her work with The Duke Spirit, Moss’ underappreciated vocals shine all that much more on this release (thanks in no small part to the sparse, understated production). A move that, according to Moss, was by design: “I began amassing vocals that I felt cut a stark silhouette, and I didn’t want to share with big drums and distorted guitars.”

Duke Spirit producer, Bella Union boss and former Cocteau Twins alumni Simon Raymonde was recently quoted as saying that “[as] Outrageously talented as [Moss] is, I still think her best is yet to come.” Words that may well have been a premonition as Liela Moss’ My Name Is Safe In Your Mouth is a stunningly realized debut from one of Brit-rock’s best-kept secrets.

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