Brobdingnagian Bards Gullible's Travels (Mage)

Texas Platters

Brobdingnagian Bards

Gullible's Travels (Mage)

The Bards' first local album, Marked by Great Size, was released only last fall, and the wordplay between the album name and band name was fair warning that there's a goodly amount of whimsy within. That's even more the case with their late-spring second release, teasingly titled Gullible's Travels. Bards Marc Gunn and Andrew McKee make medieval music for modern times, and they do it with as much passion as good humor. There are five lovely and atmospheric instrumental originals ("Maidens Dance," "Shepherd's Serenade," "Lay," "Tolkien," and bonus track 88 "Mendeluvium Madness") strewn among the 15 tracks plus Trevor Jones' "The Kiss" from Last of the Mohicans. Tips of the fool's cap to traditional Celtic folk are found on "Wild Mountain Thyme," "Johnny Jump Up," "Wild Rover," and "Irish Lullabye (Too-ra-loo-ra-li)," the latter tune guaranteed to bring a tear to the eye of even the hardest of hearts. Armed with autoharp, recorder, and mandolin, Gunn and McKee continue their lo-fi approach to this seemingly simple style of music, trading vocals as easily as moods. "The Scotsman" is another Renaissance Fair staple, a clever musing on just what Scotsmen wear under the kilt, while "King's Song" is really "I Can't Help Falling in Love With You" and leaves you wondering just which "king's" song it is. What makes the Bards unique is that their love of folk is pure and uncompromised by the demands of a full band or major label. They seem content pleasing themselves and making that good enough for the rest of us to enjoy too. Not a bad place for a couple of Bards.


A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Music Reviews
Sunday ACL Fest 2019 Record Reviews
El Mal Querer (Record Review)

Christina Garcia, Oct. 4, 2019

Texas Platters
Atlas Maior
Riptide (Record Review)

Michael Toland, June 14, 2019

More by Margaret Moser
Did I Know Bruce Springsteen Was Going to Play 2012?
Did I Know Bruce Springsteen Was Going to Play 2012?

March 3, 2017

Adult Audio Coloring Book Sampler
Adult Audio Coloring Book Sampler
A look back at illustrated album covers old and new

July 29, 2016

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle