Bunny & The Invalid Singers – ‘Flight Of The Certainty Kids’ (2021)

Uncategorized October 18, 2021

Bunny & The Invalid Singers – ‘Flight Of The Certainty Kids’ (2021)

For nearly fifteen years, Edinburgh-based Bearsuit have been releasing confounding, intriguing, frustrating, amusing, and just-plain-fun music. Bunny has been at the heart of several of their 50+ releases, collaborating with the likes of The Electric Horsemen, Anata Wa Sukkari Tsukarete Shimai (with Gnomefoam, aka Steve Bromley), Ageing Children (with Mark Rossi), and these Invalid Singers.

We reviewed their last release (Fear Of The Horizon) in 2018 and we’re glad to have them back. Eschewing normal pop conventions (e.g., verse-chorus-verse; silly wabbit, those are for kids), Bunny & Co. draw a musical line in the sand and then proceed to obliterate it by serpentining in three or four different directions, arriving at an endpoint even they didn’t see coming when their musical exploration began.


It’s all rather Zappaesque, with a dose of glitchy cinematic horror noises, distorted library music excursions, and stop-start syncopation that suggests you’ve downloaded a corrupted digital file. But that means each track may combine three or four musical ideas in one “song” and it may take a while to get your musical bearings before the next track sneaks up on you. From the aggressive ‘A Sniper’s Heart’ to the tender stroll on a Mediterranean beach with the romantic, Ennio Morricone-style ‘None Of This Happened’ (but watch out for that shark-attack coda!), ‘Flight Of The Certainty Kids’ is anything but. You might find yourself drifting off to a sensual Francis Lai-meets-Michel Legrand-soundtracked Nouvelle Vague film from the ‘60s (‘Buckled & Bleeding’) only to be interrupted by a pummeling burst of electronic buckshot with a razor sharp guitar chaser.

This juxtaposition may be frustrating and you might just have wished Bunny would pick a groove and stick with it, but that’s not the point. Complacency and comfort zones are not part of Bunny’s vocabulary here, so the title track (‘The Certainty Kids’) lulls you into a comfy cloud pillow of marshmallow fluff only to tear open the door of your daydream and toss the musical equivalent of Luiz Bunuel and Salvador Dali’s eyeball-slicing scene from ‘Un Chien Andalou’ in your face. ‘This Is Happening’ may be a companion piece to the earlier ‘None Of This Happened’ – it’s just as floating, carefree, and melodic in a groovy soundtrack sort of way, but also veers into a fuzzy needle distortion to make sure you’re still awake and paying attention.

So whether you want to cut off your nose to spite your face and edit out the back half of each track (or, conversely, jettison the dreamy preludes and collate the noisy bits for maximum, room-clearing entertainment), you’ll certainly be challenged to check your linear-thinking musical conventions at the door. Flaming Lips wingnut Wayne Coyne once released an album called ‘Zaireeka’ which was a complicated experiment best experienced by listening to each of its four CDs on a different audio system (e.g., four different CD players) simultaneously. While not quite as challenging (or insane) as that idea, the variety of different moods, directions, genres, and musical portmanteaus at play here in each track, does lend itself to similar self-experimentation by adventurous musicologists who cherish what Laurie Anderson describes as “difficult listening hours”.

Jeff Penczak

Bunny & The Invalid Singers – ‘Flight Of The Certainty Kids’ (Released on Bearsuit/15 October 2021)

Bunny & The Invalid Singers – ‘Fear of The Horizon’ (2018)

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *