The contrast of “Greetings” and “Barely” succinctly represents the overarching spirit of Gulfer, now in their tenth year as a band whose proclivities range from rousing punkish anthems to technical and exploratory indie rock. In its opening seconds, “Greetings” boasts inventive drumming and playfully intricate guitar to set the scene for a song that attempts to unpack the abundant contradictions and debaucheries that comprised our youth. There’s a hint of personal introspection in the lyrics, but singer/guitarist Vincent Ford avoids explicit resolution in favor of open-ended narration. On “Barely” the band’s impressionistic side emerges with an upbeat, pithy composition bookended by droning atmospherics. Exploring the transactional nature of so many of our relationships, singer/guitarist Joe Therriault uses “Barely” to speak on attempts at reciprocity of kindness that ultimately fall short in our over-transactionalized world.
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