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Bunny's a Reviewer (Theory Can't Find Her)

by Mia Trabalon

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@carolineplz makes an entrance (July 14th, 2021)

Here is an abstract: cute, many icons intertexting—Bunny reviewed here!

Please press release (2021)

Cat Zhang, Associate Editor at Pitchfork, sets the tone after quoting Caroline Polachek (a white American singer-songwriter, born in 1985, discovered in the 2000s with indie band Chairlift and their hit single “Bruises”). ““‘Bunny Is a Rider” is a summer jam about being unavailable,” Polachek remarked in a statement. “Bunny is slippery, impossible to get ahold of. Maybe it’s a fantasy, maybe it’s a bad attitude. But anyone can be bunny, at least for three minutes and seventeen seconds.

The song features a scorching bass performance by producer Danny L Harle, as well as the first vocal cameo by his very young daughter. Who is Bunny? In Caroline Polachek's vision, she is a figure of undeniable intrigue. Sexy and beguiling, she is not beholden to anyone. 

Brit Dawson, then a journalist for Dazed, continues in the confusion: “Casting off the gossamer avant-pop of 2019’s Pang, Polachek and producer Danny L Harle opt for a sound that is both commercial and weird: a deep, juicy bassline befitting of the Top 40, a “yoo hoo” whistle that says 'right here / come this way'.”

Just as if she wanted to recreate Bunny's slipperiness, Polachek moves through different images (bright fireworks, ever-fresh paint, sharp checks), never resting long enough for us to guess what comes next.

In the chorus, the singer enters a new dimension, shifting from narrator to first-person viewer, preferring an r'n'b prosody to her usually slender, crystalline vocals. Perhaps she wanted to channel the volition to be immaterial, but when she sings "I'm so nonphysical" it comes with the pain of a heartfelt longing.

The song's excitement is summed up in the way she sidesteps the pressure to make her intentions clear, to go from fling to fling.

SongFacts, a site that gives facts about the song, literally, reports this behind-the-scenes: during a two-day writing session, [Polachek] improvised the words "bunny is a rider" over the initial melodic draft. Although she wasn't sure what it all meant, she liked the words and kept driving with it; Bunny is a Driver.

"Slowly these pictures came together as this alter ego of Bunny," she told Apple Music, "or like the state of being Bunny where you're just completely non-findable and no one's getting their texts back."

Bunny keeps blurring the lines.

@carolineplz whistles again (July 19, 2021)

I love watching lyrics separate ppl like oil and vinegar; those who get off on abstraction (hot, genius, legends only, etc) and  those who want things to be 100% literal (oops you hate art)


Perfect tweet.


wait there are lyrics in the song?

“hello bunnies” addresses Caroline Polachek live as the first notes tip their snout. The right hand like the left, index and little fingers extended, the remaining two held back by the prehensile, the right hand ears stretched out behind her the left hand as if searching for a hidden source. Later, she mimes appearing and disappearing at every turn of the labyrinth.

Bunny is a Rider takes place in the storage facility of my mind,” says the singer of the video clip. In this labyrinth, the camera is the Minotaur, but I’m the Matador so it’s game on. But like I said before, I can teleport.” The teleportation tool on one of her biceps being the strap that holds the receiver of her wireless microphone to the red power-on indicator. The amplification of her voice lets her choose where to go.

Admittedly, she raises a hare. But: oil and vinegar is a recipe, not: an idiom. Rather, it's oil & water.

The expression "blood in the water", a vulnerability in a competitive situation, gives way to blood & butter on the eponymous song from her latest album, released on Valentine's Day 2023 (look how mythological and Wikipedized I am): blood & butter, rather than sweat blood & water, rather than bread & butter, main source of income, ordinary things.

Similarly, in the next line, oil & water could become holy water. Could Bunny be a paronomasia? Then perhaps another track should be followed.

holy water for bunnies (2021-)

For I believe (2023, also on Desire, I wanna turn into you, her second album under her own name), interpolates (in) a "Bunny" whistle (in the aforementioned song).

Sega Bodega, a producer affiliated to PC Music (a label founded by A.G. Cook in the late first half of the 2010s, to which Caroline owes many things), teases bunny is a garage remix in October 2021. A year later, having produced Sunset on Desire, he appears in the clip where Polachek drives through a desert in a car with an evocative sticker. Later, he shows where Bunny is in Woe's production for Shygirl. In early 2023, he announces: “no originals in 2023 only remixes.”

In May 2022, Lil Data, also from the PC Music-verse, a PhD candidate in programmed music via Tidal Waves, drops a cover of Bunny “sneaker wave / LoFi”. Welcome to Iceland. You don't expect these waves, although you hear them: the recording gives pride of place to field recording of these northern currents.

A few months later, a year earlier, Mood Killer released BunBun Like to RideRide. Bunny babbles psychedelically over an acid base where lyrics slide and dissolve.

He uses this motif elsewhere. On the Dawn of Chromatica remix album, he uses it on his part of the Sine from above remix. Groomed heart and sine sign, immortality of feeling young, nothing here when you live your days for nights and get lost in the glare. Is Bunny a sinusoidal curve?

Or is she a girlboss who gaslights and gatekeeps? In GIRLBOSS TODAY DJ SET, Mood Killer again uses this motif on two mashups. First on Hollaback Girl x Teenage Dream: it's my thing it's my thing, you say I'm pretty without using a palette, we can dance until we die, eternal youth to you and me.

Then on Phantom of the UPera: “If it's up then it's stuck” says Cardi B in UP!it's the expression of a lingo problem in the southern US states. Unsettled bunny won't get stuck and will find her way out. Maybe it's a different arrangement: keep some gas in your tank, stand up like a boss at the gate, girl scamper off at the speed of light.

Finally, for the anniversary of Bunny's release, Aquairy put a Polachek-Furtado audio-video mashup on YouTube, Bunny says it right. “[It] came to mind as soon as I heard the SFX in the intro of Bunny, similar to Timbaland's ad libs on Say It Right.” I can't say I don't love day and night, or even that I wouldn't know I was alive and I love feeling this: Y2K23

Bunny is a rider (2021-23)

Satellite a missed hare

Sound apathy, mm

None of this is free

A ping a lévrière

Satellite a missed hare

Sound apathy, mm

None of this is free

A ping a lévrière

Sound apathy, mm

None of this is 

Bunny is a, bunny is a reader

Nobody can see her

Sound apathy, mm

May the river join the sea

à vous, avoue, ascend head-to-head

à vous, avoue, green sparks getting red

à vous, avoue, hurt back in the shed

à vous, avoue, but keep my name scred

Satellite a missed hare (Bunny is a)

Lapine une cavalière porte en capeline une lavallière. In other words, a wide, supple bow tied to form two puffy hulls. It's featured in the hairstyle of the Welcome to my island video, as well as in live performances where Polachek teleports between tracks on Desire, her second album, and Pang, her first.

A Magic card and boxes (2019-2023)

On a Magic The Gathering card, a fan labor offered during her Spiraling Tour, Caroline Polachek is both name and image of the card, legendary category y singing.

One needs to choose between two effects: Minotaur lover – Bunny rider. Its description, an atmospheric text, is taken from Desire,'s closing song:

sex·ting son·nets under·the·table.

Bunny has a well-mapped burrow up her sleeve. Could her topography be the boxes of the labyrinth, whose hand-transcribed toponymy is a continual easter egg?

If Polachek has shed Pang's gossamer fabric, perhaps she now wears it differently. Here, perhaps, lies the solution to the continuity between her two albums.

What if the dogs that accompanied her from the portal through all those doors that are a door that opens onto a door that opens onto another door, weren't just as many raised hares, like Bunny standing up to the Minotaur in the labyrinth?

Hence the desire to blend the names of the boxes featured in the song's clip (each an easter egg, which goes well with Bunny) with the list of all the ways to call dogs according to Edward II, Duke of York, in The Names of All Manner of Hounds, dating from the 15th century. David Scott-Macnab, a medievalist from New Zealand, wrote a critical review before the manuscript disappeared into a private collection.

In L'Art de vénerie (~1328), William Twiti, expert hunter to Edward II (the 14th-century King of England, not to be confused with the aforementioned) describes the prey a priori as a “coward with the short tail,” which could be translated, rather than an opposition of the hare and greyhound extensions, as: one has only detailed to take the necessary lead, scrolling the results of the spinning.

Bunny emerges from exile and puts us back in the game.

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