Music Reviews
Out of Range

Gun Outfit Out of Range

(Paradise of Bachelors) Buy it from Insound Rating - 8/10

Gun Outfit explore the calm expanse of cosmic Americana without a journey’s end in mind. The Olympia, Washington band have operated with a workmanlike consistency for five albums now, offering a warm, translucent tint to their rootsy instrumental choices that rewards with patience and commitment. They’ve since relocated to Los Angeles, and in the progress, have gradually tempered their more rambunctious early sound with a leisurely atmosphere that conforms to their desert surroundings.

Out of Range is in many ways a maturation from 2015’s Dream All Over, an almost spiritual musical experience which chronicles their connectedness with simple and earthy pleasures. Concise rustic ballads like The 101 and Landscape Painter describe the scenic beauty of the city with streams of gleaming melodic chords. Singers Dylan Sharp and Carrie Keith carefully duet with their unusual cadences as a slow-burning arrangement smolders with the vivid sparkle of an opal’s gleam. They do take things slow most of the time, but as the intoxicating Cybele suggests, there’s also a complexity in the way they balance their quiet arrangements with intricate guitar lines. The patient mood of these songs are gorgeously realized and make the slightest disturbance, but when they do, they’re more potent because of it. Primacy of Love, for instance, is a country-tinged rocker the steadily unfurls into a harrowing finish, while the hi-hat heavy Sally Rose (presumably a reference to Emmylou Harris) is the one time on the album where the band loosens up with a swampy rhythmic hoedown.

There’s also an intellectual slant to Out of Range, given how Gun Outfit reference many historical themes with a well-read understanding of their subjects. But the band is grounded in humility, always playing against each other with a drifting timbre that’s inviting and likable. But tucked within their textural progressions lay deftly written songs that honor their long-lived inclination to remain emotionally and intellectually independent.