Electrocute, the new album by Looney Buns (a lone producer who goes by the name Marcin), might be what mainstream pop might sound like in an alternate universe. A lot of the songs on this album are completely accessible and catchy but also introduce original sounds that are sometimes quirky and often contrasting. The songs are an absolute blast to listen to. The closest comparison is to Ariel Pink and some of Bob Drake’s later work.
He often goes Matthew Herbert style on his songs using field recording and manipulating them so he can use them in a song. For example he states “song no 13, the entire drum line is constructed from field recording of smashing stones and rock pieces taken in the mountains.”
While his music is some of the best I have heard in quite some time the same can also be said about his lyrics. They are often nonsensical but have a beneficial symbiotic relationship with the music. Take for instance the lyrics to “There Is No Easy Way” where he sings “I’m hiding from living dead, who want to rip off my head, and play soccer with it, in the rough, running from girls, who look wrong.”
The album opens with “Captain Paperheart” which contains a circus of sounds (including what I believe is a kazoo), unique vocal layering (the layered vocals delivered after the lead vocal are catchy) and enough self-deprecating humor mixed with pop that he had me hooked within the two-minute mark. “Dead, Dead, Dead” is the rave/techno song of the album. The lead synths sound like something you might hear at a club but when you hear the phrase “Dead, Dead, Dead” delivered in almost a lazy way you can't help but chuckle. As I stated it is like a techno song that was written in a slightly alternative universe - not too different but different enough to scratch your head. One of my favorites was the longest track on the album “Little Dragon.” The spacious playful bells create an original tantalizing effect against the tuba (at least I think it could be a tuba).
Looney Buns is a fun, refreshing, original work that plays with the pop format. He has created one of those albums that is both experimental as well as accessible.
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