"Saladin Mercy" begins Gun on a familiar touch, perhaps almost too familiar; while a certain consistency to Muslimgauze's work is no surprise, Bryn Jones generally varies things from album to album just enough to create distinct, different listening experiences for each release. Still, "Saladin" feels like something which easily could have been on his previous Soleilmoon/Staalplaat release Maroon, with its blend of the drones from earlier pieces and the more recent tweaking and heavy variety in the rhythms throughout the song. The following track, the first "8 am, Tel Aviv, Islamic Jihad," sets things more to rights, with a combination of sharp pulses, echoing roars, and what sounds like a domestic squabble between a couple caught on tape - a characteristically strange combination which again works out quite nicely in the end. A little more than most Muslimgauze releases, Gun is very environmental in terms of its composition; the reliance on conversational snippets throughout almost turns the album into a soundtrack for a non-existent film. As is often the case for Muslimgauze, the most fascinating elements of Gun often are the simplest, such as the persistent, slow-rising beat in the first "Opiate and Mullah," or the shift from near silence to an elegant, slightly creepy keyboard arrangement about thirteen minutes into "Oil Prophets (pt. 1, 2, 3)." Gun wraps things up on a very moody note with the dark rumblings concluding "Oil Prophets (pt. 4, 5)" and the quite brief but deep, moody drones of the second "Opiate and Mullah," making for a slightly unexpected end to a fair album.
Bryan Reesman (Alternative Music Press)
All tracks written/played by Muslimgauze, Manchester 1994/1995.
Engineered by John Delf.
Mixed by Muslimgauze and John Delf.
01 Saladin Mercy
02 8 AM, Tel Aviv, Islamic Jihad
03 Opiate And Mullah
04 Oil Prophets (Pt 1, 2, 3)
05 8 AM, Tel Aviv, Islamic Jihad
06 Lazzaream Ul Lepar
07 Oil Prophets (Pt 4, 5)
08 Opiate And Mullah
SOL 27 CD
Soleilmoon Recordings Web Site, MySpace