Bear the Mammoth – Yamadori


Album

Yamadori

Label

Independent

Year

2014

Genre

For Fans Of

Mogwai - Explosions in the Sky

Summary

Don't let the score scare, this is not terrible, just is in need of a little more spark.

Rating

50 / 100

Bear the Mammoth have an anonymity that can work in one’s favour but equally hinder. Upstarts in the local scene, the band has already created honest and forward-thinking music, which earmarks them as a band with promise and potential. However, while the Facebook page claims “the music pitches and lulls, ebbs and flows like an ocean of melody and mood,” new album ‘Yamadori’ doesn’t 100% live up to this claim.

Opener ‘Cloverlea‘ is tranquil. Its ambiance feels like something that would be playing in your local crystal/hippie kind of store. Apart from the primary track, all these songs come in at around 10 minutes, so while we only get six tracks, the album still comes it at around 45 minutes. It’s a marathon not a sprint.

‘What’s Yours Was Mine Is Never Leaving’ is a slow builder. Crashing percussion and fun rock guitars greet the ears early. However, we move from some grittier rock sounds to light hearted indie and back to rock. While these competing sounds are ideal in isolation and on their own, the song is disjointed and lacks continuity.

As the album continues more songs do the same thing, moving from heavier rock to light, tranquil styles. While each add an element of both an upbeat delivery and soothing calmness, it would make more sense just to split them into their own songs instead of interrupting the flow.

‘The Bonding Leech,’ has some solid guitar distortion while ‘Glycine’ jolts you out of your peaceful state with its eerie introduction and repetitive drum beat. This track is one that seems to hold the most emotion but the album overall becomes a little bit stale and repetitive.

Let’s make the point, ‘Yamadori’ overall isn’t a bad album. These are competent musicians with an appreciation and understanding of their genre. However, this, like most instrumental music, is an acquired taste. If 45 minutes of straight instrumental rock sounds good to you, go for your life. Otherwise, you won’t much else that invites.

Conclusion

‘Yamadori’ has some emotional styless, soothing sounds and also upbeat rock elements. It has some engaging parts but also some sections that lack flow and feel a little repetitive. It holds some potential but there is still work to be done for Bear the Mammoth.

Tracklisting

1. Cloverlea
2. What’s Yours Was Mine Is Never Leaving
3. The Bonding Leech
4. Glycine
5. Hieronymus Bosch
6. Molly

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