What are two guys hailing from Seattle who used to be in a three-piece band together supposed to do when they move to Japan? My first thought would be to start an instrumental keys & percussion duo that combines the nostalgic sounds of ‘80s video games and jazz. Well, you guessed it that’s exactly what Ryan Morris and Micah Gettys did. The duo currently goes by Graphics on Television and they recently released an album called Pun.
First let me get this out there that Pun is an enjoyable album and at the very least is original. As I was listening to it I kept on thinking that the music is just about perfect for get-togethers for people who may not be well acquainted. For instance, book clubs or wine tastings - you get the idea. Anyway, the point I'm trying to make is that the music can be enjoyed passively or actively. It’s an instrumental jazz album that is soothing, often nostalgic because of the video game sound and you don’t have to pay attention to the lyrics (except for one song but the lyrics are minimal). Whenever those awkward moments appear this music can eloquently arise so no one has to force the conversation.
As esoteric as an instrumental jazz album that revolves around ‘80s video games sounds it’s surprisingly diverse. There are ten songs on this album and the duo mixes it up quite well. One of the most overtly video game influenced songs is “Well Plastic.” The synth tones will take you back to 1984 and possibly dusting off your old Nintendo to play “Zelda.”
“Icicle” sounds like a variation of “Sweet Jane” by The Velvet Underground while the next song “Bringing The Dough” is about as playful as a toddler and puppy being adorable together. The vibe changes as it progresses but that beginning part will honestly make you feel a tad bit silly in a good way. Next time you and your partner get In a fight over who didn’t do the dishes just turn this song up and start tickling him or her. They will either tickle back and smile or tell you to “fuck off.”
Pun isn’t one of those records that won’t change your life and by all means I don’t think Morris or Gettys had that intention when making it. It's an unpretentious record that you may pop in once in a while and that exists in its own little niche. Enjoy.
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