A relocation to Los Angeles from their lush Pacific Northwest home has done wonders for Olympia-bred quartet Gun Outfit, whose fourth album, Dream All Over, is the band's most subtle and evolved effort to date. Their gradual transformation from skuzzy, SST-inspired post-punk to astral, desert highway blues has played out over three fine releases on Dean Allen Spunt's (No Age) Post Present Medium label, with 2012's Hard Coming Down paving the way for this enchanted set. Dylan Sharpe and Carrie Keith have been at Gun Outfit's helm since the band's 2007 origin and, until now, they've generally operated as a trio with drummer Reuben Storey propping up their strange, dueling guitars. Along with the change of locales and a switch to North Carolina's Paradise of Bachelors label comes the addition of bassist Adam Payne who dovetails neatly into a mix that, remarkably, sounds sparer and looser than ever. Both Keith and Sharpe continue to share vocal duties, supporting each other throughout the album, with Sharpe's laconic drawl leading hazy, meandering rockers like "Matters to a Head" and windblown incantations like the spoken passage on "In Orbit." Acting as his foil is Keith's sweet, airy voice sharing the load on the dusty, conversational opener "Gotta Wanna" and guiding the lovely, mandolin-led "Legends of My Own," among other tracks. Even with its banjo, organ, and sitar adornments, Dream All Over has a wide-open, arid feeling to it as if the band broke down in the crusts of the Mojave en route to their final destination. It also has the distinction of featuring some of Gun Outfit's loosest performances, while also being their most focused record, with no shortage of highlights ("Worldly Way" and "Pass on Through") peppered throughout its midst.
AllMusic Review by Timothy Monger