The new EP by Berlin-based rock band Bunny Suit shows such a jump of maturity in songwriting, and such a leap in quality from their days as Quixote, it’s hard to accept that it’s the same band.
Except of course that it’s not. With the name change nearly all the orginal band members fell away, apart from main man Cameron Laing – songwriter, singer, pianist and general mover and shaker – plus long-term sidekick Phil Walker and French bassist Guilliame.
If Cameron just kept working stolidly on in his own way and the changes wrought have come about simply because of the new line-up is possible, but maybe the sea change did also herald a time of personal change for Cameron, because something happened between then and now.
Big crashing things that are insistent about having their way with you
He’s all grown up. There are still the twisted screeching rock-out sessions that we know from Quixote days but the songs that stand out for me are the slower numbers, left to begin with voice and sparse instrumentation and leaving themselves plenty of time to breathe before building very slowly into big crashing things that are insistent about having their way with you.
Cameron Laing has stuck at this a long time now, all the way from his first band in small-town South of England, through travels that led him into the darkest alleys of the least salubrious areas of Europe’s capitals, and finally through a number of twists and turns to Berlin. Where he stopped and chose this as the place to make a stand. He seems not to have held any doubts about his eventual triumph – else how could he have kept on going all this time.
This EP feels like a triumph
And this EP does feel like a triumph. With the odd bit of screechrock still in there, but now more as a counterpoint to the grandiose slow burners, the EP is a summit reached. And the recording of the EP comes concurrent to Bunny Suit’s signing a publishing deal with Universal. Could it be that Bunny Suit’s time has come?
The recorded quality is clear as a bell, the musicianship of everyone playing on there is impressive, the arrangements are well thought-out, and the songwriting has settled down and found its place in the world.
The Mud Here Has Memories, the name of the EP, is quietly available to buy through the band’s website but isn’t advertised and isn’t properly released. More a thank you to their fans, they say.
I must say I’m looking forward to the album. And to what comes next.
Article by Noel Maurice, author of The Berlin Diaries.