The depth and breadth of The Ruby Suns' songs has, to no surprise, grown dramatically since their 2005 self-titled debut. The epic Sea Lion was intended to be a world music album, but reverb and psychedelic pop crept back in to create a unique mixture of exotic sounds, accomplished with an impressive array of instruments—from steel-string ukulele to djembe drums to pots and pans, all set upon a cosy cushion of synths and cassette samples. The Ruby Suns perfectly describe their wide-ranging influences with: "Pop music, noise, psychedelia, flamenco, South Pacific, southern Africa, home recording, hiking, travelling, animals, beaches, vegetarian food, especially falafel." Phones ring and field recordings follow: footsteps in a friend's backyard, getting drunk at a bar in Chicago, screaming kids at an indoor pool, and Kenyan rug makers singing. All of these sounds churn within tidal tape manipulations. Relating to a small, solitary sea bird on the opening track of Sea Lion, Ryan McPhun sings, "The great Pacific can connect you with your relatives." In 2004 McPhun gathered some like-minded Kiwi wanderers and formed the band Ryan McPhun and The Ruby Suns. He also enjoyed stints in various Auckland-based pop groups including The Tokey Tones, The Reduction Agents, and The Brunettes, with whom he toured the US with The Shins and Rilo Kiley both in '05. McPhun also plays drums, percussion and background vocals on The Brunettes recent Sub Pop release Structure and Cosmetics.
item # 28177