|EP Rating: B|
Don't Wait Around For Me sees Gunning Bedford not being afraid to stretch formerly concise, punch-packing songs beyond three or four minutes without losing their valuable potency. Full confidence is placed in vocalists Chris Boecker and Anthony Prestipino on the EP, and with good reason; their voices collectively account for each track's solidarity and accessibility. No, Gunning Bedford aren't making some presumably revolutionary soundscape album compounded from recording mutilated hog innards - they're just writing the songs they know how to write. Palm-muted guitars and keen hooks mingle with the occasional 'Seventy Times 7'-esque bridge to lend Don't Wait Around For Me the charm that it needs to garner subsequent listens. No extraordinary talent or creativity is showcased on a track like 'Joint Effort', but its woeful shouts and wails afford it the sincerity it wields a la Jim Marburger of I Hate Myself. When Gunning Bedford are lucky they've got a fan or two singing along in a basement, when they're not they've got more to write songs about. By the time the last syllable of "I left this place to get away, but everything comes back to haunt me" fades out on closer 'Last Call, December', it's pretty apparent that these boys have came, have seen, and have effectively conquered the exquisite art of duct-taping the bumper back onto their rusting Chevy Express.
As listeners, I think we can collectively forgive Gunning Bedford for some typical but minor missteps; a middle track that drags on a little too long, a few songwriting moments marred by clichés about weighty shoulders and buckling knees, and a moment or two or repetitive instrumentation. We can all revel in the fact that they're really just dudes like us, sporting Orchid tee's over neck-beards and boasting clumsy stage antics over decade-long commitments to veganism. When all is said and done, I'd imagine that the kids in Gunning Bedford don't really give a damn whether they wake up with 100 or 100,000 Facebook "likes"; they simply do their thing because it beats doing nothing. With that, I indifferently suggest you listen to Gunning Bedford, 'cause, well, it beats the shit out of listening to nothing.
1. Weird Times
3. Joint Effort
5. Last Call, December