I recently saw Bear Hands in concert (more on that later). If you're not familiar with this band, Bear Hands is an indie-band from Brooklyn, and their sounds reminds me of White Rabbits, among others. Bear Hands issued a promising debut album in 2010 called "Burning Bush Supper Club". Now finally comes the band's second album.
"Distraction" (11 tracks; 36 min.) starts with a tentative "Moment of Silence", with singer-songwriter's Dylan Rau's lead vocals heavily distorted (on purpose obviously). "Giants" explodes like a rocket in the night. Things slow down on "Vile Iowa" (Iowa is vile? who knew?). All but one of the songs on here clock in around 3 min. and most of them make their musical point and then move on. Love that energy. The second half of the album opens with "The Bug", reminding me of XTC 30 years ago for some reason. One of the album's best tracks is "Peacekeeper", with heavy guitar riffs and crashes, beautiful! The album closes with "Thought Wrong", a super-slow, introspective tune that frankly sounds a bit out of place as compared with the rest of the album. But it's a minor quibble. Bottom line: this is a belated but very welcome return from Bear Hands!
I saw Bear Hands in concert just this past weekend at the Bunbury Music Festival here in Cincinnati. They played an early evening set that had been delayed due to a thunderstorm passing through. Rau & Co. didn't care one bit, as they gave their all and the appreciative crowd ate it up. They played mostly from the new album, and truth be told, live these songs sound much heavier than on the studio version. If you have a chance to see these guys in concert, do not miss them! Meanwhile, "Distraction" is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!