Distinctly British, Tunng is a collective that embraces hooks, prefers them stripped bare and pastoral, and basks in intriguing guy/girl harmonies. But this isn’t simply an ideal, it is a reality; Good Arrows, the band’s third release, succeeds on all three levels, filled out by a mash-up of styles culled from the musical minds of the sextet.
Pop themes and comforting eccentricities flow freely through each of Good Arrows' 11 tracks, from the madhouse romp of “Bullets” to the rust-stringed banjo-born fairytale of isolation, “King”. All unravel with loose intensity and a congenital levity that is strangely ironic and consistently intriguing.
Few bands are able to develop a sound that succeeds fully, and Tunng has done better than most. Weaving timeless timbre and pop constructs, this album flourishes throughout, only missing the mark on a track or two where concision gives way to drifting repetition. But these moments are few and are distinctly overshadowed by the sepia tones that soak through, refreshing Good Arrows again and again.
Good Arrows is available September 25 on Thrill Jockey Records.