Album Review – Am I Really Going To Die Here by Gorgeous Bully (2022) (Self released)
After four years, Manchester’s Gorgeous Bully, our favourite modern day melancholic jangler,is back with his first album since 2018’s, Closure album (Breakfast Records) bought him to the consciousness of the indiest of indie music fans.
Without compromising the quality his fans have grown to expect, there is a less than subtle shift in the type of fuzzy, lo-fi brilliance on offer on this Am I Really Going To Die Here abum. This is primarily seen in the differences heard in the loud/soft intra-track dynamic that has always typified his releases.
Initially the raucous has gone from his ‘loud’. Whereas previous releases have seen this facet of his aesthetic packed with massed fuzzed melodies, that nudged at wall of sound and alt.rock, here Sick Of Everything, Sober and Ugly Baby, all offer stripped back guitar driven sounds, that are perfectly devoid of clutter, but packed with an attitude that hints at the artists need to get matters of his chest with alacrity. It is all incessant drive, with a deliberation missing from his previous rock edged output.
Such a de-cluttered thematic also augments some of the ‘soft’ tracks. Here Docile, Wasted and Half Dead Half Alive, see the artiste take on a totally minimalist feel, as he plinks away through acoustic tracks, that would surprise even Elliott Smith with his ability to create sheer unadulterated emotionality out of so little.
Of course his signature, softly jangled beauty, that is always imbued with a perfectly strange, spatial production, is thanfully still on offer in Live This Way, Nothing Comes To Nothing and Parasite. However, rather than being the dominant sound of the album, such tracks are given a new lease of life as they do not engulf the release and feel fresh amid the stoicism that surround them.
On all three of his albums Gorgeous Bully has always managed to shift emphasis without losing the beauty he is constantly capable of. A truly brilliant act.