SKIBUNNY - Walk Don't Walk EP

by James Briscoe Rating:7 Release Date:2010-06-07

SKIBUNNY are a British two-piece signed to the Smalltown America record label, described as "uplifting electro-pop", consisting of Tanya Mellotte on vox, guitar and keys and Mark Gordon on vox, bass, guitar and keys. A team effort then?

Now, on first impressions, you might think, "SKIBUNNY? What an awful name for a band." It sounds a bit like a name thought up by someone who is not quite in a sober state and the buzzing, synthesized intro to SKIBUNNY's title track, 'Walk Don't Walk', could make your mind up on this fledgling band, based in Edinburgh and Belfast respectively. However, it seems that good things really could come to those who wait as, after hearing it out, this curious cat still has all his nine lives remaining.

SKIBUNNY's Walk Don't Walk EP, consists of four tracks: 'Walk Don't Walk, Walk Don't Walk (Cereal Spiller Remix'), 'Ossington', and 'Cut and Run'. Initially the track 'Walk Don't Walk', sounds a little like Faithless and then develops in to something more like The Subways. Whatever it sounds like, though, I cannot pick out anything that reminds me of 'bad' music. Nevertheless, when you really listen to each word you do question if lyrical content is necessarily SKIBUNNY's forte; simple and insubstantial or intelligent simplicity? You decide.

Whether a remix was necessary or even a favourable choice for this EP is debatable. It must have been the band's DJ'ing past that encouraged this track plus an admirable confidence in the quality of their title track. A remix is a welcome addition to any passionate fans of SKIBUNNY; however, I never really see the point in a remix on an EP. Surely the idea of an EP should be to inform any of us who are ignorant of a band to the style of music that they offer. This remix, then, seems to me like a wasted opportunity to showcase other facets of their armoury.

The third track on the EP, 'Ossington', has a clear and fresh ambience. The synthesized snare drum beat offers an atmosphere that you might experience during a torrential downpour in a Central American jungle, even though Tanya Mellotte sings about Ossington, a place in Nottinghamshire. The modern beat does not really fit with the sentimental words in the song; however, you can certainly tell that this duo have an idea or two about how to make music. 'Ossington' is extremely easy to listen to and runs smoothly through verses and chorus.

The final track on the album, 'Cut and Run', which attempts to prop up the whole EP, will require you to turn the volume on your speakers right up to even pick out a word Tanya Mellotte sings. This song has the bristled atmosphere of Sonic Youth's 'Superstar' cover, if not the clarity of voice. It also has a similar understated nature which you can sense throughout the EP.

After listening to SKIBUNNY's Walk Don't Walk EP, it appears that they actually cut and run themselves. When you hear the first underwhelming moments of 'Walk Don't Walk', you are mischievously led to underestimate the ability of this pairing but there is nothing more surprising than when you listen until the end of the EP and realise that they have quietly given you a piece of very accomplished DJ-inspired atmospheric pop and ran away until you listen again.

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