Gun Outfit: Out of Range (Paradise of Bachelors/Southbound)

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Sally Rose
Gun Outfit: Out of Range (Paradise of Bachelors/Southbound)

The bleached image of Monument Valley on the cover of this fifth album by a now LA-based five-piece gives you the physical and metaphorical reference for their spacious, slightlydelic desert rock of jangle'n'slide guitars, dusty vocals from Dylan Sharp and the keening folk sound of Carrie Keith, the deep mythology of literature considered on peyote perhaps . . .

There is something of the artist-as-oracle here (Cybele), sometimes a lyrical overreach given their deliberately spacious cosmic-placid groove, and for full immersion these songs probably required a provided lyric sheet (with annotations, bibliography and footnotes). The opener Ontological Landscape seems to be a recast probing of the Orpheus and Eurydice myth – or some similar relationship gone bad -- in a psyche-pop context.

Musical languor and loveliness abounds (Three Words, Primacy of Love) and at times there is an emotional silence at the heart of these songs – akin to the enveloping quiet in silent Monument Valley – but the whole doesn't gel because it digresses into byways (the distant country-rock of Background Deal for example) at the expense of its best focus (Second Decade at the end).

Interesting . . . but that is a word which suspends judgement, right?

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