Posts Tagged ‘kingdom technology’

Tunabunny / Bastards of Fate at Collapse Board

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Tunabunny at Dynamite Hemorrhage

Previous Tunabunny albums have always been marked by the occasional detours away from their Pylon-accented noise-pop blueprint & into more experimental sound collage territory, but on Kingdom Technology, they’ve fully given themselves over to those once-brief shortcuts toward non-linearity & the off-kilter sound glitches resulting from their choice to record this latest LP on an imperfect sound input device apparently liberated from a dumpster at the University of Georgia. They’ve also been eating some serious dub for breakfast & it shows, like during the six opening minutes of “Airless Spaces,” with its repetitive mutant disco bass/drums groove & submerged spectral vocals (from guitarists Brigette Adair Herron & Mary Jane Hassell), or “Save it Up,” with a decidedly warped & wobbly early-80s ZE Records-style electronic pulse. I think their greatest successes come when they take their stabs at short & sweet fuzzed-out pop songs & there’s a few such gems scattered amongst the musique concrete manipulations here – namely “Coming For You,” with the sort of sharp hook & sublime harmonies that most power-pop bands would kill for & “Canaries in Mineshafts,” which is barely over a minute long & sounds kind of like a female-fronted Chairs Missing-era Wire wrapped around some gloriously messy Sonic Youth guitar noise. That being said, I’m still curious what they’ll dig out of the trash for their next album. (Happy Happy Birthday to Me – hhbtm.com)

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Tunabunny at Flagpole

Eccentric and prolific local rock group Tunabunny is reportedly prepping yet another new LP, titled PCP Presents Alice in Wonderland Jr., the follow-up to March’s weird and lovely Kingdom Technology. But while they’re at it, they’re still churning out visual accompaniments to tracks from the last release.

Today, we’re happy to premiere one such project, the video for Kingdom Technology‘s ethereal opening track, “Airless Spaces.” The clip, which features a first-person journey through a strip mall, is as formless and yet arresting as the band’s music.

Watch below:

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Tunabunny at Fear and Loathing in Long Beach

I love your latest record Kingdom Technology. In my opinion, it’s a primal
garage scream of electronica, erotica, and neurotic impulse. What impact
did you seek with the compositions and accompanying album artwork?

Our friends Chris Nelms and Jason Matherly did the artwork, and aside from
thinking they’re wildly talented we’re big fans of each other’s work so it
seemed natural to ask them to do the cover. We don’t necessarily make
music to have an impact—if anything, we have an impact because we make
music. But if we could control the results of our intended impact, we’d
all have swimming pools shaped like palm trees.

You have referred to pop/rock as a “played-out corpse” with Jack White
being the best example of a derivative formula based musician. Do you
feel that the inclusion of ear pleasing melody and harmonizing throughout
your own compositions resembles pop/rock in anyway?

We think our compositions resemble pop/rock in every way. But you know,
all our pop friends think we’re hopeless weirdos, and all our avant-garde
friends think we’re rock stars. Which is probably the best place to be.

You have addressed modern music as “over privileged boys and girls
looking to manufacture an identity…” I personally think there are many
unaddressed personality disorders clogging the creative air of unique
artists and musicians. Why do music listeners pay so much attention and
money to generic retreads of the past?

Because they’re generic retreads of the present? More likely they’re just
responding to a conservative music press/music industry. With so much
music being made these days, it requires a lot of determination to sift
through it on your own, and as a result people are dependent on
websites/critics/etc. to recommend stuff to them. If that stuff is
backwards-looking and easily digestible, it’s more the fault of the music
press/industry than the music listener.

What is the typical reaction to Tunabunny that you encounter the most?

Confusion and/or adulation. Also, an increase in the use of thesauruses.

Do you think music in general should always be undefinable or
unpredictable? Does it benefit the band or the listener more?

We don’t think there’s that much of a split between band & listener. We
were (and are) music fans before we were musicians. And as listeners,
yeah, we tend to get excited by music that sounds different than what
we’re used to (recent examples of this would be Bastards of Fate, Blanche
Blanche Blanche, and Micachu) than something that sounds like, say, The
Stone Roses (though we all unabashedly love their 1st album). But should
it always be undefinable or unpredictable? Not if you want a bigger
swimming pool, apparently. But it’s good to keep in mind that owning a
swimming pool increases your risk of skin cancer.

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Tunabunny at The Finest Kiss

As Elvis Costello once and, “accidents will happen” Athens, Georgia’s Tunabunny found a synthesizer in the garbage heap and infused their indierock with some art school blips and bleeps and came up with one of the catchiest, funnest sounding records of the year.

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Tunabunny at Whisperin and Hollerin

I know very little about Tunabunny other than they come from Athens, Georgia and I was sent this vinyl LP which features great painted sleeve artwork by the band themselves. It seems to indicate they are probably art-rockers of some kind.

The album proffers a quiet, lo-fi opening that builds as the Naomi Yang-like vocals come in and the sparse drumming underpins it and eventually the album gets airborne with what sounds like an airplane taking off across my speakers.

Canaries In Mineshafts is like a cross between The Blake Babies and late 80’s Sonic Youth. It’s a great short sharp blast of a tune. Save It Up brings a minimal techno Beth Orton vibe to the table but you need to turn the throbbing bass up so that the anger can be used in a positive way as the lyrics have it.

Different Jobs goes all Glitchcore industrial lo-fi with crawling keyboards and disembodied vocals that are a bit Meatjoy if that isn’t too obscure a reference. Power Breaks however is all casio keys, glitch backing and cool vocals on an early Kraftwerk meets Dif Juz driving tune that pulses from the speakers.

Good God Awful is a wonky pop lo-fi slag off chant-along with the odd weird diversion. It’s a song that leaves you wondering if she really likes the object of her disdain or not. Tete-A-Tete finishes side one with some Theremin pulses; almost like an interlude piece apart from the vocals going a bit Karen Finley on us but not as filthy as that might imply.

Side 2 opens with Tunabunny Coming For You: an upbeat indie pop floor filler that gets a bit Sundays-esque. It’s probably the most commercial tune on the record. That’s followed by the noises and pulses of Not New Years, full of pulsing claustrophobia like a really bad hangover.

Empire is Glitchy bleepy and beguiling lo-fi that ends with an odd radio sample. Chalked Up is all Slits meets Sleater Kinney in an alternate lo-fi universe with some cool lyrics making this a great slag off tune.

Terminal Departure seems to be a slow almost church-organ style sort of chill out interlude that leads into Bag Of Bones: a surprisingly Donna Summer goes Italo-disco in a pit of deep nasty bass thumps sort of tune that could easily become a bit of a club tune with very little re-mixing.

The album finishes with (They Say) This Is Where Our Dreams Live; full of low down hums and noises with a carefully told story that takes us on a bit of a hell ride. In a very cool way it almost sounds like the more experimental end of Everything But The Girl but more out there than they get as a rule.

This is a cool album that never settles into any sound for long enough to become boring or sound remotely mainstream. Simultaneously, it still manages to be rather compelling and at times rather poppy too.

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Bastards of Fate, Tunabunny, and Muuy Biien at Pop Rock Nation

Bastards of Fate, Vampires are Real and PalpableLoud, woozy, strange, carnivalesque, racing from one idea to another, and prone to explosions — all with crooned melodic vocals.

Muuy Biien, D.Y.I. An abrasive, churning, hostile splatter of echoey 2-minute punk-rock songs, more spoken/yelled than sung, that’s very well-played for what it is and ends up striking me as lots of fun. The surf-rock influence helps.

Tunabunny, Kingdom Technology. A very strange amalgam of vocal-harmony-driven rock’n’roll, drone/ambient, and Fall/Wire-ish post-punk.

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Tunabunny at Dagger

Athens’ prolific no-wavers Tunabunny are at it again, presenting their fourth album in as many years, and it’s a stunner. It’s dense, complex, and dark. It’s also easily their most experimental record to date. One minute they’re doing this really great indiepop take on Belinda Carlisle, all sweet harmonies between Brigette Herron & Mary Jane Hassell…until you listen to the lyrics. Dark, dark, dark! I’ve always felt that they’ve had a Raincoats-like vibe, and songs like “Not New Years” and “Chalked Up” sorta prove my point. The opening epic “Airless Spaces,” though, is a very dense experimental number that sort of floats around, while the closing epic, “(They Say) This Is Where Our Dreams Live” is just flat-out creepy. These folk have always been about following their creative muses, and they’ve done just that, coming up with their most compelling music to date. www.hhbtm.com

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Muuy Biien, Tunabunny, Luxembourg Signal, and Bastards of Fate at Collapse Board

All mentioned in a half-year review of 2014.

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Tunabunny at Innocent Words

Having turned in three albums in just as many years, it should surprise few that year four has brought the Tunabunny’s fourth album. And what a beauty this one is.

The 14 songs that make up ‘Kingdom Technology’ are a little more pop than some of their earlier efforts, but still crammed with plenty of experimentation making this arguably their most accessible album to date.

The Athens, Georgia-based foursome were kind enough to take some questions from Innocent Words recently. Brigette Adair Herron handled the responses, but assured us that the whole band gathered around the keyboard to answer the queries as a collective.

Innocent Words: It’s been almost a year since your last record. Are you going through a particularly creative spell, or were some of these songs written for the last record?

Brigette Adair Herron: Since we started making records, our going rate has been about a record per year. We’ve had four records so far (including a few singles and tracks for compilations interspersed during this time), and each one has taken about a year to complete as a finished “album.” I guess that’s sort of the rate at which we work. Although it never feels like work, because we genuinely love making records and music together. We always have a surplus of songs that don’t make it onto albums, so look out for our unreleased tracks album in 2016.

IW: This new record sounds pretty different than ‘Genius Fatigue.’ Was that a conscious decision?


Herron:
 Creativity sometimes works best when you give equal time to both your conscious and subconscious impulses. All of our records sound different. We never actively try to sound different or the same, but we are always conscious of the fact that we like the way it sounds. That’s the only requirement. Themes are important, but that should really be left up the listener. Sometimes I hate to hear an artist’s interpretation of their own work. I think it’s better to hand that power over to the listener or music critic. What’s there is already there, now it’s your turn! Though the work may be finite, we welcome an infinity of opinions.

IW: How does the band usually write music? Do you all write together in one place, or do you bring in songs pretty much mapped out to the rest of the group?

Herron: How does the band write music? With absolute freedom. Creating this ‘Kingdom Technology’ was more like creating a sculpture than sitting down to paint a landscape. We threw some clay on the ground and everybody got a knife.

IW: What’s next for the band?

Herron: What’s next? I wish I knew! Our most immediate plans are to continue on as we always have – getting together to play and record music and having fun. If it’s economically feasible and people want us to come play where they live, we will consider doing that too.

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