Ralfe Band – The Bunny and the Bull

For readers who are unfamiliar with the ongoings in recent British cinema, Bunny and the Bull is a low budget ‘comedy,’ written and directed by Mighty Boosh director Paul King, which was released in 2009. It follows the journey of two men, travelling around Europe, one of which looks suspiciously familiar to Mr Fielding himself, but without the sex appeal, charisma and general appeal that Noel undoubtedly generates.

The film did not make a major impact on the world of film upon its arrival and whilst Bunny and the Bull does display some signs of comedy, it is not the main characters who generate it, but the cameo appearances of Mr Noel Fielding and various others Mighty Boosh regulars. In a nutshell, Bunny and the Bull as a film is nothing special to write home about.

Musically however, it does fair somewhat better. Composed and performed entirely by one band, the 22 songs that comprise of the soundtrack, all seem to slot in the film, in a very appropriate and relevant way. The men behind this are Ralfe band, a musical outfit started by songwriter / film-maker Oly Ralfe and drummer Andrew Mitchell, who have been in action since 2005. Sounding like “a ghost train love affair” Ralfe Band’s music is both unique and surreal in many different ways, making it perfect for this particularly strange and wacky full length feature.

However, this is not a normal OST, to understand the true relevance of the songs and why they have been a) named as they have and b) what they are about, it does massively help to watch the film. Another point about this OST, is that there are only really 3 or 4 pieces of music that could constitute as songs; “Fiesta Song,” “Attics” and “Bull Dance” are the longest, whilst the rest of OST seems to come in the form of short pieces, that mirror the emotions or scenes of the film it saddles alongside.

This isn’t to say that Ralfe Band aren’t musically talented. Their composition and ability to use a whole host of instruments and sounds, is very impressive to say the least. By combining the obscure and the normal, the classical and the electronic, Ralfe Band have comprised a list of material that will most definitely be over-looked and under-valued by the general public and whilst this may not be headphone reaching stuff, its hard not to appreciate the work of true artists when you see (hear) it. The highlight of the whole OST has to go to “Museum” however. Raw band instruments combine with an undercurrent of synth and oddity, making “Museum” a brilliant piece of music, one of a few that could reach the sacred iPod or MP3 player.

“The Bunny and the Bull” is not a film for everyone and the OST is no different. Ralfe Band have not created an album here to please every audience, but one that would go akin to the film and tell its story through the power of notes and strings. However, to say that Ralfe Band are not gifted would be a big mistake to make because, listening to the way in which this OST is presented, what becomes apparent is that Ralfe Band posses not just the skill but the imagination to conjure and design a good collection of music.

Who should buy this? Its hard to say, but if you fancy allowing your mind into an odd and mystical world, then maybe this is an OST actually worth your money and your time.

Original article first appeared on Altsounds website on 02/12/10

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