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Reviews: The Thoughts ~ Consider the Bear|
Posted on Sunday, May 03, 2009 @ 11:47:33 UTC
Artist: The Thoughts
CD: Consider the Bear
Home: Seattle, Washington
Quote: "The Thoughts have offered up material for the thinking fan, and they aren't afraid to take chances with their wintry trips through sound and style."
By Peter Braidis
Without question, Seattle's The Thoughts are an intriguing proposition. A trio with violin/guitar/drums as the musical backbone and vocals that could fit in with most Radiohead or Sigur Ros material isn't for everybody, but for those up to the challenge, it's well worth the ride.
The songs on Consider The Bear bring the listener in through quiet, ethereal passages that sometimes give way to odd time changes with wild, yet controlled drumming by Jon Horvath. There is an odd coldness that pervades throughout, yet the music is not overly dour or depressing. Not everything works here, and some more development needs to be accomplished, but there is something special on this CD.
Though the music is nowhere near as intense or complex, my thoughts (ha, ha) drifted towards veteran Prog Rockers like King Crimson or Curved Air, at least in spirit.
The violin from Katie Mosehauer offers counterpoint on many songs and is quite effective. Often, Ian Williams' vocals blend in with the violin especially on "First" and "Equation," the latter song being somewhat haunting. "Blue And Gray" is a slow-building number with strong vocals, while "Bells & Gunfire" is a real highlight with some crazed off-kilter drumming, an unusual chorus and tempo changes to boot. Things get a bit pretentious however, with "Requistion" (sic) being a bit much, what with it's mildly grating vocals and slight percussion washes. However, the final track "Northern Lights" makes up for any mistakes with dirty guitars that complement the dark/light shading that creates an atmospheric landscape.
Although the guitars are mixed in a way that does not suit my tastes, the sound seems to fit well here. As for the album title, I think bears should be given a rest for a while in music. Bear with me here: Minus The Bear, I Wrestled A Bear Once, Grizzly Bear, Bear Hands, Bear vs. Shark and even Care Bears On Fire! At least it's only the album name here that utilizes the word bear. I consider the bear played out.
The music is what matters though, and The Thoughts have offered up music for the thinking fan, and they aren't afraid to take chances with their wintry trips through sound and style. I applaud them for it.
Artist Website: http://www.TheThoughtsMusic.com
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