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Tuesday, December 5, 2023

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Best of the BayBest of the Bay 2022 Editors’ Pick: Spacemoth

Best of the Bay 2022 Editors’ Pick: Spacemoth

Maryam Qudus' hellfire cosmic lo-fi bedlam is best received live, to get the full thwack.

Our writers and editors are choosing some of their favorite people, places, and things that deserve plaudits for being the best in 2022. See who our readers chose in our Best of the Bay Readers’ Poll here.

Maryam Qudus, a first-generation Afghan American child of working-class immigrant parents, apologized for responding to me via email only a few days after I tried to make contact. She’d been busy, no doubt.

“One of the things I enjoy most in the world is holing up in the studio and playing with synthesizers,” Qudus affirmed.

Spacemoth is her artistic identity, a vehicle with which she has collaborated in the studio with Thao Nguyen and mxmtoon, as well as produced for Sour Widows. But despite her impressive resume, no one knew how expansive Qudus’ No Past No Future record would be.

I’m a witness to its live experience. Whoa! Spacemoth’s set at The Rickshaw Stop, an evening-time indoor performance that was part of the Outside Lands Music Festival, was the kind of audio-visual experience that can only be fully received live, in order to get the full thwack.

I’m talking screeching audio tape loops, sound reverb, hellfire cosmic lo-fi bedlam, all working in concert with one another. It delivered imaginative astral-pop feelings that teeter between opaque Bowie moments and synth-pop Berlin creations.


“The visual aspect of a show has always been so important to me and I am lucky to have collaborated with visual artist Stephanie Kuse, who helped bring the live show to another level,” stated Qudus, who opened for Spellling on tour this fall. She said recent performance experiences have been, “pretty incredible.” She’s been opening up for other artists a fair amount and, “seeing a line of new fans at the merch table buying a record after hearing my music for the first time has been one of the most heart-warming and life-affirming aspects of playing shows.”

Get Spacemoth’s music here.

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John-Paul Shiver
John-Paul Shiverhttps://www.clippings.me/channelsubtext
John-Paul Shiver has been contributing to 48 Hills since 2019. His work as an experienced music journalist and pop culture commentator has appeared in the Wire, Resident Advisor, SF Weekly, Bandcamp Daily, PulpLab, AFROPUNK, and Drowned In Sound.

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