MINUS THE BEAR

Voids

Suicide Squeeze

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On their sixth album Voids, Minus the Bear started with a blank slate, and inadvertently found themselves applying the same starting-from-scratch strategies that fueled their initial creative process. Album opener Last Kiss immediately establishes the band’s renewed fervor. An appropriately dizzying guitar line plunges into a propulsive groove before the chorus unfolds into a multi-tiered pop chorus. From there the album flows into Give & Take, a tightly wound exercise in syncopation that recalls the celebratory pulse of early Bear classics like Fine + 2 Pts while exploring new textures and timbres. Invisible is arguably the catchiest song of the band’s career, with Jake Snider’s vocal melodies and Knudson’s imaginative guitar work battling for the strongest hooks. “What About the Boat?” reminds us of the “math-rock” tag that followed the band in their early years, with understated instrumentation disguising an odd-time beat. Erase, recalls the merging of forlorn indie pop and electronica that the band dabbled with on their early EPs, but demonstrates the Bear’s ongoing melodic sophistication and tonal exploration. By the time the band reaches album closer Lighthouse, they’ve traversed so much sonic territory that the only appropriate tactic left at their disposal is a climactic crescendo, driven at its peak by Cory Murchy’s thunderous bass. Not since Planet of Ice’s “Lotus” has the Bear achieved such an epic finale. All in all, it’s an album that reminds us of everything that made us fall in love with Minus the Bear in the first place, and a big part of that appeal is the sense that the band is heading into uncharted territories.

"Minus the Bear reunite with their original label, Suicide Squeeze, to release an album that is as far removed from their original material as the band has yet gone. VOIDS is largely composed of lightly angsty guitar rock anthems and pseudo-emo ballads, with little instrumental sophistication to satisfy long-term fans." Under the Radar Mag

Tracklist

1. Last Kiss 
2. Give & Take 
3. Call the Cops
4. Invisible 
5. What About the Boat? 
6. Silver 
7. Tame Beasts 
8. Erase 
9. Robotic Heart 
10. Lighthouse