by / August 9th, 2014 /

Bear In Heaven – Time Is Over One Day Old

 3/5 Rating

(Dead Oceans)

The fourth studio album from Brooklyn-based fusion rockers Bear in Heaven, Time Is Over One Day Old is a heavily stylised compilation of multi-layered, heavily looped, synth-infused indie tracks that seeks to grab the attention rather capture the imagination. Having previously been criticised for over-elaboration, assiduous front man and founder John Philpot and co seem to have focused their musical talents this time around, devising an engrossing, to-the-point record in the process. No strangers to experimentation, the band readily demonstrate their respect for composition with their use of intriguing rhythmic patterns, textured synth and compelling guitar riffs and bass, producing some captivating melodies along the way.

Regularly transcending genres, they incorporate elements of retro-sounding electronica (‘Time Between’), pacey Krautrock (‘If I Were To Lie’), sinuous indie pop (‘Way Off’) and soaring psychedelica (‘The Sun and The Moon and the Stars’) into their catalogue, an endeavour that unwittingly starts to meander as the record progresses. Noticeably lagging by the mid-way point, the album’s two most interesting tracks – ‘Memory Heat’ with its exotically effervescent blues guitar riff, and ‘Demon’ with an incredible use of reverberating percussion (think ‘Sunday Bloody Sunday’) – briefly re-establish the ingenious energy first embedded with heavy hitting opener ‘Autumn’, but are unable to offer any real progression beyond that.

While the haunting ‘Dissolve the Walls’ and effortlessly sombre ‘You Don’t Need The World’ provide a resonating conclusion, its noticeable that the band have run out of ideas by that point, a real shame considering the show-stopping quality of some of their material. Administering moments of intrigue, elation, aggression and intricacy, Time Is Over One Day Old undeniably works well as a collection of avant-garde, ambient rock singles, but ultimately fails to inspire as a larger body of work.

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