I bought PIGIBIT5‘s Mr. MUNBA when it released on bandcamp, but then forgot to write about it until it showed up in a generated playlist. Sitting down with the album again, I remember why I thought it was so good. The album is a mixture of different instruments like the standard guitar, bass, and drums but added to the mix are keyboards and strings. This creates a hybrid mixture of styles that’s not entirely rock, punk, or noise.
Mr. MUMBA is strange. It sounds like folk punk rock on “Explosion in the Yamada,” but has this experimental twist. It’s a great song and one of my favorites on the album. The song sounds like an expanded jam session arranged into a song. Then “Jazz_i” starts and it’s kind of protopunk. It has the spine of punk rock, but the way the instruments are used it sounds highly experimental, but composed with a mathematical touch. While on the surface it can sound random, there is a lot of layering and form to each song.
Give “Burgerlover” a listen and you might scratch your head and wonder what kind of song this is. But as you listen, the repeating verses along with the layered melodies become a lot more noticeable. Overall Mr. MUMBA is great in that strange way. It might not be interesting on the first listen, but it does start sticking in your head.
The ten songs on Mr. MUNBA are great. The combination of styles has resulted in one of the most unique albums this year. And considering it’s been about three years since the last time PIGIBIT5 has released music, it’s a welcome return. Anyone who enjoys punk, rock, and garage rock will likely enjoy Mr. MUMBA a lot.