Gun Control – Volume 1

After their old band Philociraptor disbanded, Steve Mann and Justin Penney immediately formed the new project Gun Control. Why, you may ask, so quickly afterwards? Because, as two thirds of the Vancouver-based lo-fi poppers claim, Gun Control is just a cool name. Well, thank goodness for cool names because their debut album, Volume 1, is a delightful, bristly romp that in its short running time channels Japandroids' massive reach for the stars anthems but filtered through the four-track recorder of Robert Pollard.  There is a pervasive sense of fun that permeates the record's entirety, but the real intrigue found here is in the slight sense of weariness that percolates just below the surface of each of the nine ragged tracks. It’s hard enough being in a band, and after Gun Control spent a year recording these on their own -- off the cuff -- in their rehearsal space and the Vancouver Public Library, mixed it themselves, then had to take some time off when one of the members shattered their elbow in a squash-related injury, maybe a little weariness is to be expected. In fact, I feel this elevates Volume 1. It helps to strip off the facade of its sunny sheen to reveal something human and ultimately very relatable underneath. Check it out for yourself here and when the album is released everywhere Friday, February 3rd.

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