Moby definitely falls into the category of “love ’em or hate ’em.” It’s been this way since the release of the transcendent Play in 1999. Critics were either enthralled with his ability to form genre-busting electronic music, or angered at….well, maybe the same thing. Either way, ever since then, his music has been under tight scrutiny. He seemed to lose a lot of people with the sometimes pretty and other times flat release of Hotel, and his strictly dance album Last Night was largely ignored, despite being an overall strong cut.
Wait For Me finds Moby, alone his bedroom, stripped bare. Under the influence of David Lynch, Moby decided to create the album alone, at home, and pour all of himself into it.
What comes of it?
Wait For Me ends up as probably the most intriguing and important album Moby has put out this millennia. The music is largely ambient and highly personal. It would appear that Moby is in dire need of a hug. Tracks like “Shot In The Back Of The Head” and “Walk With Me” allow the listener to peer into Moby’s soul, which is a sad, but beautiful place to be. Actually, I can’t really limit that statement to those few tracks, the whole album feels like that. It’s not until the fifth track, the Wolf Parade-esque “Mistake” (which is also the first track he sings on) that the mood lifts a little bit….but only a little.
Wait For Me might also try your patience a little bit. The album never really swells up like Play did, minus the beautiful title track “Wait For Me” near the album’s close. The ambient tracks all flow together nicely, but never really change pace. To stress the feel of the album, it’s kind of a downer. Deep within the album, you come across the beautiful “A Seated Night.” However, you’ve heard it before…..earlier in the album. So, it may suffer from some musical anonymity, but it creates the consistent mood that holds Wait For Me together. So, it doesn’t have those musical peaks Moby is known for, but it doesn’t need them. Otherwise, the album just might be downright schizophrenic.
It’s a strong album, that is for certain. However, it might not be for everyone. It’s a emotional cocktail of the string instrumentation found on Hotel, the aural mood and sampled song/dialogue that lifted Play, topped off with a splash of Aphex Twin. But it’s not a cocktail that you have to drink alone to find out, Moby is always there with you. And he makes for some interesting company