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Menos El Oso

Minus the Bear Audio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Biography

2012, Summer. Seattle, Washington, something mucho significant was built by 5 dudes’ touch. It is called Infinity Overhead. When the air filled with this piece, heat, light, noise and color to be transformed into stream and traveled through the air with the time shift. Pull and push, depth versus altitude. This romance is like having a high tech air-in choccolata from east village. Once ... Read more in Amazon's Minus the Bear Store

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Product details

  • Audio CD (26 Sep 2005)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Undergroove
  • ASIN: B000AOVLAO
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 152,994 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. The Game Needed Me
2. Memphis And 53rd
3. Drilling
4. The Fix
5. El Torrente
6. Pachuca Sunrise
7. Michio's Death Drive
8. Hooray
9. Fulfill The Dream
10. The Pig War
11. This Ain't A Surfin' Movie
12. This Ain't A Surfin' Movie (IQU Remix) (Bonus Track)

Customer Reviews

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4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hitting Their Stride 1 Dec 2006
Format:Audio CD
First things first - if you don't get the mood of this album by the midway point of the opening track, then alas, this ain't for you. The Game Needed Me is Minus The Bear to a tee - complicated instrumentation made to sound so beautifully simplistic that it leaves you in awe of the achievement. A repetitive guitar and bass loop bounces over a rhythm section that sounds like Amon Tobin. Imagine a more eclectic chilled out Helmet, or a drum n bass Fugazi and you're getting close. It just sounds so fresh and modern. Drilling unwinds along an evolving guitar line that grows to a rousing conclusion, whereas The Fix and The Pig War sound like Cake but less alt-country and more 31 Knots with Dan The Automator. The only deterrent may be Jake Sniders' voice - something I'm actually quite fond of - which comes across as a more laid back John McCrea. To me it's smooth and echoes the melody of each track. For some it seems lazy and more make-do-without-a-singer than intentional. Nevertheless, the promise Minus The Bear have shown on previous EPs has finally borne fruit.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Clean Delicate Beauty.. 16 Sep 2009
Format:Audio CD
I have been listening to this album for three years solid and it never ceases to thrill me with its intricacy, warmth and overall tightness as an album.

So often albums have a tendency to feel incoherent and therefore lack a cogent collective identity as a group of songs. Menos el Oso displays an attention to detail that gives the album a distinct feel throughout without becoming repetitive.

The album also offers the perfect balance between technicality and accessible melody, from the beautiful and poppy 'Pachuca Sunrise' to the delicate and muscular 'Fulfill the Dream'. I feel the unique combination of complex instrumentation and dry vocal tone the band possesses is best depicted on this album compared to the somewhat washy (in my opinion) 2002 album 'Highly Refined Pirates' and rather too epic (again, in my opinion) 2007 album 'Planet of Ice'.

As is often the case with Minus The Bear, the ocean never feels far from both the lyrics and feel of the instrumentation. As a fellow neighbour of the shoreline I cannot recommend this album enough.

If you live by the sea, have adequate access to the sun and your not an idiot than this album is for you.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a marked progression in maturity 3 Dec 2005
Format:Audio CD
This being their second album proper, Minus The Bear is finally being expected to have fulfilled some of the promise and potential that was claimed about them on release of their debut 2001 EP, This Is What I Know About Being Gigantic. Up ‘til now they had garnered a reputation as a rather riveting jazz-punk, prog-dance combo that comes equipped with imaginative virtue with their instruments and song titles alike. Menos El Oso should be the record to show their purpose.
The weathered Seattle quintet still manages to interlace all those classic alternative rock staples of yesteryear and beyond with dallying prog, abstract punk and instant art-rock all coming through the play. While previously the music often took a backseat to Jake Snider’s overbearing choruses, this is clearly not the case any more as his bandmates have seemingly been given a freer reign over the music, letting it advance more experimentally and with greater fluidity. There is a definite course that this music is running.
This is the sound of a band that has grown and matured. The once zany song titles are now stripped bare of all superfluous material. The content that was riddled with tales of girls, binges and purges now even delve into the art of concept writing, accounting happenings in ‘El Torrente’ that you can only hope are make-believe. The spazzy disjointedness that was so indicative of Minus The Bear’s music is generally mellower, typified by the innocuous ending of two gently tranquil love songs.
The potential and promise that was spoken of so fervently when Minus The Bear arrived is slowly being fulfilled. This album offers a different dimension to the band and in a way it offers a lot more in terms of musicianship. If nothing else, they’ve proved that there’s more to them than madcap song titles and other oddities.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Return To Form 20 Sep 2005
Format:Audio CD
This album is totally cool. Up there with Highly Refined Pirates (which should be essential). Menos El Oso isnt quite as good as that, but there are some proper ace tracks like 'Hooray' and 'The Game Needed Me'. The album does have a few tracks in the middle that aren't that great, but it picks up. And 'Pachuca Sunrise' is totally cool.
Minus the Bear's brand of relaxed dance music does seem to be at times so laid-back as to be horizontal, and this album is no different. If you liked the other albums, then this is gonna be a treat. If you've never heard of them (shame on you), imagine guitar dance music for people who like to sleep. Yeah!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  40 reviews
13 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars haiirogumanofu 15 Jan 2006
By FYP - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Lets see . . . I learned about Minus the Bear about a year ago, hearing about their first CD Highly Refined Pirates. My older cousin, who is now in college, gave my brother the CD to listen to. Well, I listened to it about 6 months to a year later, But it was a great CD. So, I looked on amazon and other places, and found this CD, Menos El Olso

Menos El Olso succeeds in ways Highly Refined Pirates didn't even touch. The sound is fresher, and sticks in your mind well after you've listened to it (It's like when you sing to yourself, and everyone around you asks, who the hell is that?) They do away with the little 50 second songs that get real annoying in the first album, and build more solid music. The overall effect is pleasent,and creates an album you can listen to constantly without wearing it out.

However, the elimination of the same short 50 second songs like "You Kill Bugs Good Man" and "Damn Bugs Whaked Him, Johnny" leaves the album with sort of repetative feel. Also while some songs are classic, like "Hooray" and "The Game Needed Me" some leave something to be desired, Especially the last two, "The Pig Wars" and "This Aint a Surfing Movie".While Menos El Olso may be the best Minus The Bear album yet, it just a bit more of the same that made their first album so good.

Oh . . . and I'm also going to see Minus the Bear in Febuary in Shibuya. I Can't freakin' wait untill then. It's gonna be great
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best MTB Album, Hands Down 17 Aug 2008
By Shed - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
There's a big riff among a lot of MTB fans as to whether or not this album is superior, lacking, or equal to the band's previous effort, "Highly Refined Pirates". In my opinion, "Menos el Oso" takes what "Pirates" had and goes the extra mile, making a much more full and directed effort.

I truly believe that this is a "summertime" album. Just try playing it on a road trip during the summer, or while you're at the beach, lake, etc. It's an amazing album to listen to with friends and gets you in that zen place that's full of no worries. I'm even playing this album on my iPod at my job and it's just keeps me in an awesome mood everytime.

The difference on "Menos" is that the guys sound like they have a lot more direction this time around, which gives them a more definitive sound. Yes, the fun and silliness of "Pirates" is still there, but MTB definitely matured on this album by implementing stronger grooves, smart (while tongue-in-cheek as well) lyrics and experimenting with different sounds. One can see the beginnings of where they'd go with "Planet of Ice" on this album, but those Pink Floyd-esque sounds aren't very prominent on this album.

All the songs are great on this album, no filler whatsoever. But specific gems on this album (if you're going to introduce anyone to MTB) include:
"Memphis & 53rd"
"The Fix"
"El Torrente"
"Pachuca Sunrise"
"The Pig War"

If you're looking for a band that's different, smart and fulfilling, check out this band, and check out this album. It's a killer.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Their Best Album To Date? 2 Jun 2007
By Refined Pirate - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
When you listen to Minus the Bear, there's a certain sound you expect to hear. That smart, quirky, bleep bloop rock. Finger taps and hot dance beats mixed with electronica and non abrasive vocals. My friend travis would argue that Highly Refined Pirates is their best (and quintessential) work, but I believe Menos El Oso is the superior album. The album is not boring as some may claim- it's just more mature. MTB's song writing is at it's best, along with the quality of the musicianship. The album is solemn and beautiful with enough hooks to keep you coming back no matter what mood your in.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Atleast Botch broke up for something 26 Jun 2007
By Donovanonfire - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
When listenig to Minus the Bear it's hard to believe that the pioneering metalcore band Botch had a hand in their creation. But alas, after that bands demise in 2002 Dave Knudson formed Minus the Bear, and Menos El Oso, their sophmore album is an indie rock spectacle of genre defying elements. Often, indie rock is down trodden mesh of boring linear chords and syrup soaked, avant-garde like lyrics. But Minus the Bear manage to keep the music up tempo, and still sing relevant and deep lyrics. The guitar work is more complex than the usual indie fair, and the keyboards/production by Matt Bayles is top notch as always. If you're looking for an album and a band that you can always be in the mood for, than Minus the Bear's Menos El Oso is just what the doctor ordered. Beware Botch fans, this is far, far removed from We Are The Romans.
Buy it. Play it. Love it.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Flawless 4 Sep 2005
By D. W. van Klaveren - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
The latest self-titled (well sort of) release by the Seattle wunderkinds completely exceeds all expectations left behind from 2003's "Highly Refined Pirates"... From the initial bombastic sounds of "The Game Needed Me" all the way to the chilled out closer, "This Ain't a Surfin' Movie" M.E.O. glides from track to track like an anorexic figure skater performing toe loop after toe loop. And believe me kids, that's a good thing. Rather than provide a bland track-by-track synopsis, let's just get down to brass tacks. Pachuca Sunrise and El Torrente stand out as the two real highlights of the album. The former being a raucous dance jam track, filled the the catchiest hook this side of Weezer; and the latter being a truly serious, introspective tune with a psychedelic 60s type groove working for it. The driving forces behind this release, as with any other album by The Bear are Snider's beautiful voice, perfect percussion, and the "nerdy" guitars. For those who are just getting into Minus the Bear, don't be fooled by such prior song titles as "Thanks for the Killer Game of Crisco Twister" and "Wanna Throw Up? Get me Naked". The boys have a lighter side when it comes to titling their songs. But the music, the music is as good or better than anything anyone is putting out these days. As with any other Minus The Bear album, Menos el Oro is a must have. See them live too. Yell Yar at them. They dig it.
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