Bunny & The Invalid Singers - The Invalid Singers

11 songs
48:13 minutes
***** ***


In the recent past, Scottish musician Bunny has been active as one half of the experimental duo Anata Wa Sukkarai Tsukarete Shimai. Before that he used to play in a couple of other bands, although in late 2011 he released his first solo album Fall Apart In My Backyard under the name Bunny & The Electric Horsemen. This changed to Bunny & The Invalid Singers, but apart from two guest vocalists on the two versions of the title track, the new record seems to be an entire solo affair.

As can be deduced from the artist’s past endeavours, The Invalid Singers is once again not an example of instant accessibility. Just like the cover artwork which feels incredibly off-centre, the music follows in those same footsteps. I am not sure if Bunny is considering himself a songwriter, or rather a composer, as his works always try to blend the lightness of pop music with a more earnest side usually associated with serious music.

The opener Ask The Man Inside Your Head still shows Bunny from his catchiest side. Even though the instrumentation comes with a searing synth line, the contrapuntal backing vocals add an unexpected lightness, emphasised by the repeated guitar riff. The second half of the song falls into a more playful atmosphere. A lot of the sounds have a rather synthetic feeling to them, reminding me sometimes of Pascal Comelade’s toy orchestras, combined with the surreal otherworldliness of the Residents. The reoccurring guitar madness throughout the album even allow for occasional parallels to the insane noise rock of the Butthole Surfers.

What speaks for Bunny’s compositional skills is the fact that the two vocal tracks are actually quite good, but at some point one would have wanted the entire album without any real lyrics, as the music is lush and varied enough to tell its very own stories. What makes The Invalid Singers stand out from other experimental indie pop albums is the fact that in Bunny’s musical universe, the more earnest side of composed music is fluffed up with wah-wah ridden guitar sections, thus dragging the album into a rather uncharted territory between art and entertainment. The Invalid Singers may not be an instant pleaser, but it was never intended to be like that. Instead you will be rewarded with constantly new discoveries after every repeated listening.

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