Gunning For Tamar – ‘Dark Sky Tourism’

As far as album tasters go, this a particularly appetite whetting one. The first cut to be released from Gunning For Tamar’s projected 2013 debut album is a whiplash shot of jerky mathcore, a two and a half minute exposé of the band’s signature mix of feral time switching and melodic breaks. Drummer D’arcy is on particularly good form, cementing what could be a muesli of disparate ideas with that lean, streaked, cymbal-n-tom-driven style we’ve come to love. “I’ve had ‘bout enough/ I don’t know how to stop”, grits Joe – and he really fucking means it.

But there is a weakness. The much talked about (by the band, Alcopop!, and even OMB itself) appointment of Tom Stanley, former engineer for The Cure, to the mixing desk is quite honestly not the coup they would hope; the track sounds wet with pop honey and alt-rock presets. Don’t get me wrong, the production is fantastic – but it is production by numbers. GFT are an incredibly tight band, and they would frankly sound so very much better if they for once would take a lo-fi approach and just let the natural beauty of the songs work their own way out instead of tightening the whole thing into a ball of aggressive compression. Or in their own words, “The anaesthetic is a luxury”. You don’t need it boys.

Here’s to hoping the rest of the album is a bit more organic. Until then, I’m off to stick the single on repeat.

Released on 6th August 2012 by Alcopop! Records