Grizzly Bear, ‘Mourning Sound’ | Track Review
There is no ‘mourning’ on “Mourning Song.” Alternative darlings Grizzly Bear returns strong following a five-year hiatus between albums.
Five-year hiatuses seem to be the rage these days. Why? Not sure. Alternative rock collective Grizzly Bear returns after a ‘beary’ long break with a new album, Painted Ruins. Painted Ruins marks the band’s first album for RCA. Yep, indie going major. Ahead of Painted Ruins, four singles were issued: “Mourning Sound,” “Four Cypresses,” “Three Rings,” and “Neighbors.”
From the start, “Mourning Sound” has an intense groove, anchoring things down. This grabs the listener’s attention, keeping them engaged. Within the groove, a hint of synth is perceptible alongside the bass and drums. Following the verses, the instrumentation increases, with the sound expanding, including synths. By the conclusion of “Mourning Song,” Grizzly Bear seems to throw all kinds of sounds at the listeners. Musically, the palette is marvelous – expected from an alternative band.
Vocally, Ed Droste shines from the start. He gives a solid performance, with sound vocal production amplifying it. The structure of the song is interesting. There are two verses, with brief instrumental sections – interludes – following them. The first two verses are written in similar fashion, eschewing complex lyrics. On the first verse, Droste sings:
“I made a mistake / I should have never tried / I took the cake / Finished every slice / I moved away / Still playing off the fights / For every day / I share our love delight.”
While it lacks complexity, the simplicity is appealing and downright charming. The first chorus arrives after the second verse-interlude.
“I woke to the sound of dogs / To the sound of distant shots and passing trucks / We woke with the mourning sound.”
After the third verse, which is patterned after the first two, there’s a slight variation of the chorus. Instead of “I,” Droste goes for “We.”
Does Grizzly Bear have much bite with “Mourning Song?” All in all, this is an enjoyable indie-rock/pop joint. “Mourning Song” won’t change your life mind you, but it represents a good sign for Painted Ruins.