Jun 08 2009

Grizzly Bear – Veckatimest

Published by at 1:42 pm under Alternative,Boston,Experimental,MP3's,Muse News

Yellow House never really did it for me. The first three songs, ending with “Knife,” were beautiful and accessible. They drew me in and built a graceful momentum. But the remainder of the album, the other 8 songs, broke off, choosing to meander through sometimes aimless soundscapes with no discernible resolution. It was Department of Eagles, Grizzly Bear’s Daniel Rossen’s side project, that restored, or initially placed, my faith in Grizzly Bear. I had a bunch to say about that here. Anyway, like the good lil’ music blogger that I am, on to Veckatimest.

Veckatimest finds Grizzly Bear at a point of self-realization. They have power – magic maybe – and they’ve chosen to wield it. With “Two Weeks,” a hook-fraught, stand-up chamber pop epic, Ed Droste finds a Frank Sinatara-swagger to his vocals. He waltzes across a staccato keyboard and through disembodied harmonies; he finds his stance and sets hold, confident, charming, nearly ebullient with pop-righteousness. But the power of Veckatimest is in it’s adaptability and emotive range. “Two Weeks” descends into “All We Ask”, a brooding, reverb-soaked ballad marked by Rossen’s trademark stomping baritone guitar. Instantly all that serotonin has vanished. The verse swells into the chorus, which wavers behind Rossen’s bop before gently eroding to the underlying current. The boys harmonize in a near whisper: “I can’t get out of what I’m into with you.” If  “Two Weeks” is a sunny summer’s day on a hillside, then “All We Ask” is the corresponding insomnia at two A.M. (Oh, is that what time it is? huh.)

After the first serveal listens my memory of the album felt like a sin graph; it peaked with certain hooks every few songs and descended into oblivion with others. The sequencing speaks to a calculated foresight, where each of their most accesible songs is spaced by several more brooding ones. It nearly follows the High Fidelity rules for making a mixtape. “Cheerleader” bumps between reverbed guitars and marching-beat drums while Droste ghosts over everything. “While You Wait For the Others”, basically a Department of Eagles song, follows Rossen’s heartbreak, reinforced by the most prominent harmonies on the album. I’ve fallen in love with the expanse of Veckatimest, the overwhelming density of sound, the swelling harmonies, the way each track tends to morph several times before resolving in a definite form. I Guess I’m Floating compared the Veckatimest anticipation to Srgt. Peppers. Then I thought it was hype, now I can only agree. This might be an album for the ages.

Grizzly Bear – Cheerleader

Grizzly Bear – While You Wait For the Others

And here is the video for “Two Weeks”:

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4 responses so far

4 Responses to “Grizzly Bear – Veckatimest”

  1. v.on 12 Jun 2009 at 4:26 pm

    Veckatimest is a brilliant album, with amazing harmonies, I agree. I can’t really show how much I love this album right here, my English is not good enough to explain it, but I could spend hours talking about it in French …

  2. Nickon 13 Jun 2009 at 1:13 am

    Je n’ai pas parler, ou ecrire, francais depuis longtemps, mais si tu as quel que chose a dire en Francais, je peux traduire…

    -Nick

  3. キャッシングon 31 Aug 2009 at 2:27 am

    Currently, Japan is one of nine people and using people, two people per person to hold the credit cards “power caching”!

  4. m65on 28 Feb 2010 at 1:08 pm

    good share grizzly bear is sick….in a good way

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