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Standout Track: No. 3, “Battery Cage,” rips through D.C.’s early punk history in less than two minutes. Channeling Bad Brains and ’80s Dischord fare, lead singer and bassist Pitt Stains rails against factory farming with an overt political rage that’s tough to find in 2011. Anger is the device of choice on this song and most of the EP, Stains says. “It’s the emotion I can convey most honestly.”
Musical Motivation: Though they played their first show as a band in 2009, the members of Möbius Strip are no newbies. At 29, Stains is the youngest member. He used to play with guitarist Mark Kennedy in the band Petworth, among other projects. The two joined with Shane Carwile and began practicing in Stains’ Columbia Heights basement, but not inconsiderately. “We built this ridiculous cube to keep the sound from spreading to the neighbors too much,” says Stains. “It’s a freestanding structure in my basement—on the best days, you can fit a fourth person inside.”
Fowl Friends: The song’s title refers to the tiny cages that house egg-laying hens in industrial agriculture. Both Stains and Kennedy have participated in animal advocacy groups. “I’ve worked for a variety of animal rights groups in a variety of roles,” says Stains. “I’ve been exposed to a lot of animal abuse on video and in person.” Like most Möbius Strip songs, “Battery Cage” is unabashedly political. “I’m not a creative enough person to sit down and decide to tell a story in song,” Stains says of his ideological lyrics. “I figure there are enough bands in the world writing songs about girls, songs about heartache, and songs about beer, so I write songs that are important to me.”