Drawing from disparate styles of music may be hard, but doing it with tastefulness is even harder. Yes, it's true that The Moho Collective combines a jazz trio's sophistication, the songwriting savvy of a classic Brill Building production team, the elbow grease of the Muscle Shoals house band, and an arena-rock outfit's muscles -- the band even possesses an orchestra's penchant for epic gestures and an ethnomusicologist's drive to understand. But what stands out the most about The Moho Collective's music is how seamlessly all these sounds come together. Yes, The Moho Collective has the chops to blast the audience in a flurry of notes, but each of the band's members opts instead to make every note count. In fact, the notes they don't play say as much as the ones they do.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, all three members of The Moho Collective -- drummer Ryan Barclay, guitarist Kurt Johnson, and bassist Justin Rister -- have formal backgrounds in percussion. Where this might lead to territorial friction in other bands, Barclay, Johnson and Rister embrace each other's distinct approaches to timing and feel. Each member speaks his own rhythmic language, yet the band is able to find unspoken common ground. In the process, it weaves three dynamic layers of groove within a cohesive whole.