There's this band called The Ruby Suns. They used to be called Ryan McPhun & The Ruby Suns, now it's practically just Ryan McPhun who is McRunning things.
Mr McPhun is clearly pretty well connected. He played in bands like The Brunettes and The Tokey Tones (I liked both of those bands). And then he went off to have some McPhun on his own...
The first album (The Ruby Suns) was okay...but then in 2008 there was Sea Lion. And now we have Fight Softly.
I reckon Fight Softly is charlatanism - and I compared the album to things like The Animal Collective.
People were unhappy - that's fine of course. I'm voicing my opinion with a review and they're voicing their opinions with comments...just as you voice your opinion here when you comment on this blog. But I was interested that people got a bit defensive about the comparison to The Animal Collective. Or maybe I just read in to that?
History will not be kind to The Animal Collective (refer to them as "The Animal Collection" if you really want to wind up the band's fans - it works).
The Animal Collection can't write songs.
Anyway - I've printed my review below - because it was in last week's Dominion Post and I'm keen to know if it is just me that doesn't get the buzz with this hipster-darling? Do you like The Ruby Suns? And if you do what is so great about them/him (Ruby Suns stuff is basically a solo project, as I understand it).
THE RUBY SUNS
Lil' Chief Records
While I can't turn around and say this is the most awful album I have heard - I am pretty sure it's one of the more annoying. The Ruby Suns are the equivalent of that kid that sat next to you in class and kept trying to copy your work; you'd hunker down and bury your head to cover the words, your elbow pointing dangerously in the direction of the new enemy as you used it to guard your work and as some form of threat. It would never work though - the annoying copycat would always see through and the teacher would tell you to stop being silly for your troubles. Well - that annoying kid is Ryan McPhun and he's been peering over the shoulder and somehow under the elbow of bands like Animal Collective, Grizzly Bear and The Flaming Lips. It's not (quite) plagiarism but it must come close...mustn't it? I can't quite work out why people get so excited about The Ruby Suns - it's pop music that is not memorable enough to exist in and of its own right and the world music inflections are an elaborate bluff.
I gave it two stars - that's not bad. That's better than one. But some people were unhappy with that. See here for the review comments that have gathered already. And place your own comment below. Are you a fan of this music? Are The Ruby Suns just our version of an Animal Collection or some of those other bands? And does it matter if they are?
What do YOU think about The Ruby Suns?
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