Bananagun has released their new single titled ‘The Master’. Featuring a catchy beat and funk/pop chord progression, Bananagun picks off where the groovy retro/indie scene left off and owns the tone with a style all their own. This is ‘groovetastically’ brilliant in all the right places as the song builds up to that glorious infectiousness that is the hook. Brilliant on all levels.
Hailing from Melbourne, but with a sound stretching from the 60s and 70s Afrobeat and exotica, the proto-garage rhythmic fury of The Monks and the grooves of Os Mutantes, there’s an enticing lost world exoticism to the music of Bananagun. It’s the sort of stuff that could’ve come from a dusty record crate of hidden gems; yet as the punchy, colorfully vibrant pair of sold-out singles Do Yeah and Out of Reach has proven over the past 12 months, the band is no revivalists. On debut album The True Story of Bananagun, they make a giant leap forward with their outward-looking blend of global tropical psychedelia.
The True Story of Bananagun marks the group’s first full foray into writing and recording as a complete five-piece band, having originally germinated in the bedroom ideas and demos of guitarist, vocalist, and flutist Nick van Bakel. The multi-instrumentalist grew up on skate videos, absorbing the hip-hop beats that soundtracked them – taking on touchstones like Self Core label founder Mr. Dibbs and other early 90’s turntablists.
Van Bakel was joined first by cousin Jimi Gregg on drums – the pair’s shared love of the Jungle Book apparently made him a natural fit – and the rest of the group are friends first and foremost, put together as a band because of a shared emphasis on keeping things fun. Jack Crook (guitar/vocals), Charlotte Tobin (djembe/percussion), and Josh Dans (bass) complete the five-piece and between them, there’s a freshness and playful spontaneity borne out of late-night practice jams and hangs at producer John Lee’s Phaedra Studios in Melbourne.
The band’s seemingly innocuous name has an underlying message of connectivity that matches the universality of the music. “It’s like non-violent combat! Or the guy who does a stickup, but it’s just a banana, not a gun, and he tells the authorities not to take themselves too seriously.”
Photo credit: Jamie Wdziekonski