[25 June 2007]
The most appealing thing about Bunny’s debut album is the cover art. No, it’s not that the debut by the man with the pleasingly innocent nom de plume is all that bad, it’s just that nothing can quite live up to the clean design featuring subtle hints of sad clown on the scruffy James Blunt figure looking through the letters b-u-n-n-y. The album is called Play to My Own Tune, a title that implies originality, and yet while it’s true that hearing Bunny doesn’t immediately conjure thoughts of other bands, there’s certainly a little bit of Pink Floyd, a little bit of Beach Boys, and yes, a little bit of Coldplay tossed in for good measure. He’s at his best when he’s the humble sad clown of that mesmerizing cover, as on the lovely piano ballad “Leave”, which sounds a bit like a young Phil Collins singing an Elton John ballad, and “Betty” is the pleasingly clunky dark flipside of Ben Folds Five’s “Kate”. He’s not quite as convincing when he’s exuding the confidence and cool of someone who’s been writing music for quite some time (as he probably has); the orchestral manoeuvers of the title track and the excessive soloing of closer “Emptiness” are good ideas in theory, but come off as overblown and under-thought-out. Still, Bunny’s a talented enough artist to deserve better than to be relegated to an obscure Belgian record label, and may just appeal to fans of the previously-mentioned musical forebears. One more album to find his sea legs, and he might be able to write songs the whole world would sing.