Mobia's Trip

From MTV Online, November 8 1999

MOBIA'S TRIP Offers More Than a Math Lesson

MOBIA'S TRIP is a DC-based three-piece rock/funk/pop band that takes their name from the "Mobius strip." For those who aren't up on their mathematical factoids, a Mobius strip is a three-dimensional object with only one surface. If that definition doesn't clear up the concept for you, check out the band's website,, for a picture and definition of what exactly they are talking about.

Coincidentally, the band happens to be three-dimensional as well, (imagine that!) consisting of Joshua Edelstein (bass/vocals), Evan Field (guitar/vocals), and Paul Hoffman (drums/vocals). The band was formed in 1995, after Edelstein and Field had been through a string of projects together and then decided to strike out on their own and find a drummer. MOBIA'S TRIP lists influences from rock, blues, funk, jazz, country and even classical music.

On November 7, I saw MOBIA'S TRIP perform at the Galaxy Hut in Arlington, VA, and their set really wowed me with its diversity. The band started out pretty rock/pop/funkesque, but by the end of the evening, I was wondering if I was still watching the same group -- they had made this super-smooth transition into a trippy, ambient groove machine that just played and played and played. Many of their songs were segued together, a sure sign of many hours of creativity, vision, and hard work.

On stage (or on the floor, in the case of the Galaxy Hut), MOBIA'S TRIP is a tight ensemble of very skillful musicians who obviously put a lot of care into their songwriting. Most of their songs are not lyrically-focused, but instead are founded on long instrumental sections that are quite impressive to an attentive audience. Field plays a riff-heavy guitar prominently displaying a classic rock influence that really works for their sound. At times, it appears that members of MOBIA'S TRIP are just chillin'—having an extended jam session, where bandmates communicate through their instruments instead of through words.

The band released their first CD, A Long Walk From Eden, in January 1997, which is available at their shows. Do check them out.

—Nicole Legum, MTV Local Stringer

Excerpted from Sidewalk Washington, June 1999

Butternut, Mobia's Trip, Cravin' Dogs: Metro Cafe

by Jack Shay
Mobia's Trip is a funkily eclectic rock trio of former Georgetown University students. They self-released A Long Walk from Eden in 1997, which showcased the sleek, metal influenced guitar of Evan Field, the Les-Claypoolesque freneticism of Joshua Edelstein on bass and the sheer stamina of Paul Hoffman on drums.

Edelstein describes their music as "super-rockalistic smoothed out on the groove-pop tip," but sly recollections of Bell Biv Devoe end right there.

From the Philadelphia Daily News
NOTE: While the name in the following article is misspelled as "Mobius Trip," the band in question was in fact us—not to be confused with Philadelphia's Moibus Trip (sic) or Santa Fe's Mobius Trip, both active at the time.

The Lunchbox Heroes + Minus + Mobius Trip
(December 18; the Mighty Firenze)

So there I was in Chinatown, trying desperately to find Mighty Firenze. I'd never been there; I thought it was high time I gave it a try; and a band I was looking forward to seeing, the Lunchbox Heroes, was scheduled to play. I thought I knew where I was going — instead, I wandered up and down Cherry Street. A strange man approached me, mumbling something. What had he asked? I wasn't sure. He asked again. "You looking for a massage parlor?" I told him I wasn't. He told me I looked like I might be. I reiterated that I wasn't, but added that there might be some good money in it for him if he could point me in the direction of Mighty Firenze. So I turned down a night of debauchery in favor of a few beers and some local music. But the band I was trying to see never showed up. Thus, I was left with two bands I'd never heard of — Minus and Mobius Trip. We hung out. We drank. They played. I listened. To their credit, both bands seemed to be having a pretty good time, both played well, and no one mentioned the no-show band, or the fact that there were only three paying customers. Minus did a pretty good Rollins Band imitation, while the guys in Mobius Trip did their best to get funky in a virtually empty room. After the show, I thought I might check out that massage parlor, but the man with the directions was nowhere to be found.

— E.F.

From the September 1, 1997 issue of the DC Music WWWeb

Long (Not So) Strange Trip

by D.W.Nichols

For starters, you notice the length. A Long Walk From Eden, by Mobia's Trip, has twelve cuts, with four songs better than five and one-half minutes long. The independently produced and released cd, recorded at Rockville's Omega Studios, was cut in two days, giving it a sense of urgency you can almost feel in some of the tracks.

In most instances, very melodic, if somewhat protracted, guitar preludes introduce the vocals for what can be described as post-grunge pop rock. And I say that in a good way. Evan Field's guitar work is interesting without being "artsy", Joshua Edelstein's bass playing is solid and steady (the best kind of compliment), and drummer Paul Hoffman pounds it out with efficiency and style. In all, an effective and listenable combination.

While he won't be confused with any of the great tenors, Edelstein provides ample and energetic enthusiasm for the generally palatable lyric stylings. As with any semi-professional band, the lyrics are what separates the big boys from the minors, and in some cases, most notably in "Praise the Daffodil" and "Shitkicker", they just don't get it done. However, "14 Bands of Silver", with its highlands lilt, is clever and downright catchy, if not very nice, and "Harbour" and "Staring Problem" are what independent rock is all about. And the "Epilogue" is actually pretty, by far the best effort here.

In their handwritten letter to our editors that was enclosed with their disk, Mobia's explains that some of the lyrics were written the day of recording. I love rock and roll.

Mobia's Trip is playing locally in area clubs, most recently at Jaxx on Rolling Road in Springfield and Club Soda on Connecticut Ave.

From the Georgetown Voice, Volume 29, No. 20; February 13, 1997

What a long, strange trip it is
Mobia's Trip starts at the Grog & Tankard

by Jack Shay

In the ever-changing constellation of aspiring D.C. college bands, most musical alliances fade from memory long before they break up and reconstitute for what often seems like the fifth time. Mobia’s Trip, an alt-rock threesome comprised of former and current Georgetown Students, has suddenly provided a shining star from where to navigate the often less-than-heavenly firmament that is the District’s local scene.

After only four gigs together over the summer and early fall, Trip speedily cut its first CD, A Long Walk from Eden, just before lead guitarist and vocalist Evan Field left for a semester in China. The moment Field returned from the land of Mao Tse-tung, Mobia’s Trip set about sparking its own cultural revolution in the form of a CD release party at the Grog and Tankard last Saturday.

A Long Walk from Eden's 12 original tracks showcase elements of everything from Primus to Dire Straits. Rarely does Trip call into that well-known generic college band sound that is often the doom of fledgeling groups—no mean feat for a group that started recording mere months after its formation. In fact, the most remarkable thing about Trip is that so early in its development, it actually has a distinctive sound, which is even more evident in its live performance.

That sound is characterized with driving, complex basslines from Joshua Edelstein (né Ropehead) and watery-smooth guitar by Field. Frequently, the listener can clearly distinguish the creative influence in a given song; the threesome's artful ability to accomodate each others' talents gives them the diversity of sound that is the band's greatest asset.

The best songs on the album, however, are those in which the band members' musical influences mesh rather than trade off. For instance, "Harbour," (the only song in which all three members take writing credit) is a quick, traveling and conventional rock tune that blends all three instruments beautifully. "Burn," perhaps the best song on the album, incorporates the vocal talents of both Edelstein and Field into a brilliant metaphor for the pain and suffering of love.

The CD sounds as it looks—fascinating, well put-together and drawing from a vast array of influences. In short, it is incredibly polished—sometimes too much so. The drums, played so fully, forcefully and precisely by Paul Hoffman in concert, fade back into a pitter-pat on many songs because of a poor studio production choice. Seldom do the drums smash rather than beat, which hurts the harder ditties on the CD. One exception in which drum production serves the tune is "Sheva," an instrumental reminiscent of a smarter, more complex version of Metallica's "Orion."

Trip's first opening band last Saturday, Sisters of Morrissey, would have been utterly forgettable had it not imposed its lack of polish on the audience's unwilling eardrums at a gazillion decibels. Big Angry, a bass-guitar-drum combo with a consistently strong edge, showed a promising ability to handle long instrumental breaks.

Trip did not get onstage until nearly midnight and by then the crowd—a healthy group of word-of-mouthers—was wound up and ready to go, as indicated by its willingness to stop playing pool on the table between the bar and the stage.

The fullness lacking on Trip's CD was no problem from the get go, as the started off with "Shitkicker," whose title basically speaks for itself. Through the middle of the set, Trip brought out five brand-spankin' new songs (Jesus, they're quick on the turn-around!), the best of which was the lyrically impressive "Time Walking." The nearly Irish-folksy "14 Bands of Silver" sounded well thought-out (instead of trite) in concert, and the silliness of "Orange Juice" went a long way to showing Trip's potential as a live act.

Mobia's Trip's gutsy and surprising range of style and genre belies its lack of experience and demonstrates nothing less than solid individual musicianship, talent and drive. Trip is worth seeing now because the bandmembers play like they've been together for years.

Just look out for when they've actually played together for years.