Raspberry Bulbs - Lone Gunman
A cohesive album is made - only - when all of the songs are fundamentally linked internally by atmosphere, idea and concept while not bleeding into one another. The enigmatic Raspberry Bulbs seem to do this naturally with each and every release, but it feels best on 2010's "Lone Gunman". A simple piece of work executed on an opiate energy and quickly exhausted in a short bath of twinkling post-punk rhythms housed by isolated black metal atmospheres. This tape provides a gray area between many genres and it does so in spades of distinct tension and unease that purges itself by the use of 3 flowing and simple tracks. The jammy approach coupled with the extremely repetitive nature of this cassette makes for its own dissonance, nothing else is really needed in order to taste that "soul swinging" lo-fi punch that breaks itself out of the bindings which held it. And even if the restraints were pleasurable in and of themselves everything needs refreshing and it does so while combining those familiar formulas with an even less expressive sound while being able to remain completely poignant.
For me this cassette is the apex of the material which funneled itself through-out the past year or so, and all of the previous pieces came to a climax which erupted into this short collection of unsettling reveries spun out through a small, quick torrent of expositions. The musical setting for "Lone Gunman" seems "cleaner" than before which lets the audience focus its lonely tastes and ideas into a diamond sharp edge, but sheltered in these cleaner sounds Raspberry Bulbs force down that same dirty raw energy found within the bands past kaleidoscopic take on simplistic Black Metal and jarring "post-punk", whatever that may mean. The 3 tracks here traverse an uncommonly well done landscape and combine simple elements to give birth to something confusing but whole. A few riffs per song is what one should expect but with a flowing style that soars far above the usual rhythmic, monotonous moil while punk beats keep the steady rhythm for the corroded vocal attacks by none other than the sole member, "He Who Crushes Teeth". This sprawling of concise and lucid sounds achieves a rare sense of consequence that is rarely ever heard in music. This will win no races but it needs to be in most collections. The non-existent sonic diversity is, in the end, why "Lone Gunman" makes complete sense. A living idea in a dead world.