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Regarding the cover artwork of the self-titled Gurun Gurun album one has to expect a playful kind of music. And in fact the music refers to the photograph a lot – it is bright and sunny and of course it is very playful. This impression also must retain due to the fact that ‘Gurun’ is a fictional planet from the old school Slovak children’s sci-fi TV series “She Came Out of the Blue Sky”. And just to be sure: when I’m labelling this music as playful, I definitely don’t mean it in a childish sense, but in an experimental manner. Anyway, one certainly wouldn’t hear that Gurun Gurun is a Czech band. Not just due to the Sawako, Moskitoo and Rurarakiss features on that album – they delivered some truly great additional vocal parts to the album – the album seems to be heavily inspired by the Japanese culture and especially the Japanese pop music. Just to quote the Home Normal label head Ian Hawgood who released the album through his wonderful imprint.

“It’s a remarkable debut (such as it is given their various backgrounds), covering so much ground yet keeping things restrained enough to have a perfect fluency about it. I was instantly struck by the way its cute without actually being overly so, noisy yet structured and multi-layered without being overly complex. In terms of great experimental pop music, there is very little you can really ask for. Its wonderfully melodic, quirky, touching and tender, and the guest artists feel very much part of the fabric of the album and band, making the whole album seamless under the careful guidance of Tarnovski, Knoflicek and Federsel.”

The overall album is a wonderful release. The opening and likewise closing track ‘fu’ is a truly remarkable piece. By the way: the mix of the closing version has been created by Opiate! Also ‘Karumi’ and ‘Yuki ~ Hawaiian Snowflake’ are outstanding pieces on the album. And so I’ll have to quote Ian Hawgood once again when he writes: “Gurun Gurun have never lived in Japan, yet somehow capture everything that good Japanese pop music adheres to be”. This totally hits the spot. Recommended!

Oh and all purchases of ‘Gurun Gurun’ from the Home Normal store will include a free bonus album download featuring remixes by Dot Tape Dot, Hearts+Horses, Pimmon, Zavoloka, Orla Wren, offthesky and Part Timer. This remix album is a wonderful addition to the impressive self-titled Gurun Gurun debut.

[ 4,6 / 5 ]