Gulfer - Third Wind


Gulfer Serve Up Melancholic Guitar-Pop Gems On Third WindStereogum

“From the first notes of opening track “Clean,” Third Wind thrives at the intersection of emo, pop-punk, indie rock, and power-pop. It’s a mature spin on that sound, shot through with melancholy but presented with the utmost control.”  – Stereogum

“If Gulfer 3.0 has changed anything, it’s the band’s approach to arrangements. For the first time, they’re stretching out and letting a bit of space in, without losing the idiosyncrasies that endeared them to fans in the first place. The squiggly guitar riffs are still there, but used more sparingly, adding colour rather than driving things. The tempos are slower, the lyrics delivered with a bit more melody. Interstitial bits bridge one song to the next and everything just sits a little different in the mix.” – Exclaim!

“Gulfer haven’t quite ever sounded like this before, but they’ve been building up to it for longer than we realized.” – Rosy Overdrive

Gulfer create a swirl of indie-rock energy through liberal doses of math-rock rhythms, emo intensity, shoegaze textures, and pop melodic sensibilities.” – Guitar World 

“Montreal quartet Gulfer specialize in twinkly, melodic rock songs delivered with powerful controlled aggression. It’s the kind of pop-leaning emo that rarely threatens to overwhelm, but there’s also nothing flimsy about it.” – Stereogum

Named for the band’s third lease on life, Third Wind finds Gulfer at a unique moment in their ten-plus year career. When they started in 2011, Gulfer played scrappy, complex math rock influenced by the emo revival. But in 2024 they’ve emerged almost unrecognizable, while still retaining the spirit of what made them all fall in love with Gulfer in the first place. And that’s owed in large part to guitarist/vocalist Joseph Therriault.

Originally a local fan and peer, Therriault didn’t join Gulfer until 2016, along with the band’s longtime friend and now drummer Julien Daoust. Although founding member Vincent Ford and Therriault have since traded off principal songwriting, Third Wind is the first release for which Therriault wrote the majority of the songs.

While Ford and Gulfer’s other founding member, bassist David Mitchell, no longer contribute the majority of songwriting they once did, morsels of their original sound remain. Signature wistful vocals and oblique-yet-nimble guitars are still a fixture, as are thematic elements that touch on burnout, climate crisis, and losing touch with a difficult reality. But Third Wind’s stylistic turns are emphasized by deeper texture and simpler songwriting, influenced by the reemergence of 90s alternative and shoegaze.

With a new emphasis on atmosphere and more straightforward songwriting, Gulfer give themselves space to explore audaciously. Album opener “Clean” gets as close to pop as the band has ever been, where “No Brainer” dabbles deftly in downer rock that asks “what even is my fucking place in the world?”

Bold juxtapositions feature elsewhere on Third Wind: pop-punk bruiser “Too Slow” stops on a dime before evolving into a slow burning drum n bass passage, all within two minutes. And then there’s “Heartshape”, a downright love song shrouded in virtuosic performance and electric-acoustic counterpoint. Although these contrasts could be construed as aimless fiddling, their seamlessness is the true essence of Third Wind, indicative of a sage band with a renewed love for what they do.


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