Sunday, 21 June 2015

Bear Vs Rhino EP: 'Vulture' Song Review

Bear vs Rhino are a three piece originating from London. The first thing that strikes me when listening to Bear vs Rhino's debut EP, 'Vulture Song', is a sense of how raw the music is. Although this can be an extremely effective style, when coupled with a fairly amateur level of recording it seems to severely limit the listening experience during this EP.

Another aspect of the 'noisy' three piece that I was slightly uncomfortable with was the vocals. A fairly uncouth approach to singing is evident throughout, and again seems to inhibit the enjoyment of the listener. The second track, 'Milli80seconds: Publicist', again was rather disappointing, the mellow guitar intro seemed to tee the track up for a more melodious texture however immediately was overpowered by dissonant vocals and brash, insensitive drumming. The track later seemed to redeem itself however struggled to recover from the awful unison playing of the guitar and bass combo.

The third track however was more of a highlight for me as the guitar was really allowed to take over more than in previous tracks. This added a nice texture throughout and this time, the bass complimented it nicely. It was also evident to see the talent underlying in the band's instrumentalists, with the bassist nicely using the full range of his instrument, something often ignored in modern rock. However, like a beautiful cake topped with excrement, the vocals really never failed to disappoint and sit on top of the music, degrading the listening experience entirely.

Although there are some pleasant moments during this EP, much of it is ruined by the band's approach. With a fairly arrogant description on their Bandcamp page, 'we're into the same things you are, we just know more about then than you do.' (ironically, they seemed to have misspelt 'them' on their page.) they have certainly disillusioned this listener and no doubt, many others. Overall this EP lacked a sense of sensitivity which all forms of music really require. Even though the band describe themselves as 'Alternative Hardcore Rock', there is no excuse for playing in such an insensitive manner towards the other sounds emanating from within the ensemble. With a heightened focus on listening and responding to their band as a whole during songs, I am sure Bear vs Rhino could go on to greatly refine and improve their sound.

Facebook: /BearVsRhino
Twitter: @BearVSRhino
Bandcamp: /album/vulture-song

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