Reviews

Gulp
All Good Wishes

(E.L.K Records)

5/10

On their second album, Gulp – formed by Super Furry Animals bassist Guto Pryce and collaborator Lyndsey Leven – create a psychedelia that struggles to live up to its influences and ambitions. ‘All Good Wishes’, the follow up to 2014’s well received ‘Season Sun’, was inspired by Pryce and Level’s relocation to Scotland – cue pastoral themes of the natural world and imagery of sunlight and sea emerging consistently across the record. In their analogue synths and b-movie innocence, Gulp are looking to a lineage that includes Broadcast and Stereolab – unfortunately, a lack of adventure and occasionally will-this-do lyricism delivers a record that fails to match the output of similarly minded contemporaries such as Jane Weaver and Whyte Horses.

The reverb pop of ‘I Dream Your Song’ is one of the stronger moments here, an eerie folk melody refracted through gorgeous sawtooth synths. All too often, however, tracks struggle to deliver on their early promise – take ‘Morning Velvet Sky’, which begins with a fine disco-not-disco groove, but without any real hooks or sonic invention, it folds into something altogether underwhelming.

Super Furry devotees will still find plenty to enjoy – Gulp are at their best when at their most ambitious, be it the throbbing Kraut noir of ‘Beam’ or the dreamlike title track, which sees Leven’s vocals brilliantly ghost the wintry soundscape. The production is glowing and cinematic, bringing to mind Vangelis or Morricone at his most lounge, but the overall effect is less one of transcendence, and more one of landfill psychedelia.

Loud And Quiet needs your support to survive

The COVID-19 crisis has really hit Loud And Quiet hard, cutting off our advertising revenue stream, which is how we’ve always funded what we do in order to keep the magazine free for our readers.

Now we must ask for your help to save us.

If you enjoy our articles, photography and podcasts, and if you can afford to, please consider subscribing to Loud And Quiet. With FREE delivery in the UK (international subscriptions also available), it works out to just £1 per week.

If we don’t receive enough subscribers, we’ll be closing down.

We’ll post you our next 6 issues, a handmade lockdown fanzine, access to our digital editions, an L&Q brass pin, playlists, a bookmark and some other extras.