Review: Grizzly Bear’s "Painted Ruins" Album

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Painted Ruins exemplifies just how difficult it is to push the limits of genre, of style itself, in an age when much of the history of recorded music is readily available to anyone with a smartphone. The album sounds like Pink Floyd-lite—it would have been mediocre in 1968, and it's still mediocre now.

Don't get me wrong, the album is perfectly "listenable," and even, at times is enjoyable, but I seriously doubt many people will still be listening to it in a year.

The catchiest and most fun track, "Mourning Sound," features a thumping bass line and Kevin Parker influenced vocals that exhibits just how much Tame Impala's signature sound has taken over much of popular music. The problem is that Tame Impala is best when it is done by Tame Impala (or sometimes when it's done by Rihanna).

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The most interesting moment on Painted Ruins comes at the beginning of "Glass Hillside," with a Syd Barrett style melody that stands out for a few moments before quickly devolving into a bland track.

The final track, "Sky Took Hold," is the group using atmosphere and dynamics at its finest, but even that track is not likely one I will find myself repeatedly returning to.

 Painted Ruins is, ultimately, a wholly forgettable album. 

Stream/Download "Painted Ruins" Album