Grizzly Bear – New Single – ‘A Simple Answer’

12 Dec

“This track is lovingly written…”Grizzly Bear

Ten years ago, the four Brooklynites of Grizzly Bear began with an uncompromisingly spaced out folk aesthetic that repeatedly dazzled both critics and an ever-growing cult following with each release. With chief song writer Ed Droste relinquishing his monopoly over the band’s song writing, allowing a more collaborative effort, their material has peculiarly edged further still from the radio friendly.

Yet somehow they continue to chart well in the states, breaking the top 10 this year with ‘Shields’ while playing to thousands nightly in the UK.

A natural knack for beautifully detailed song writing has been the secret to their success and the idea of Grizzly Bear having ‘singles’ in the traditional sense of the word seems oxymoronic. Overt use of pop hooks and choruses sure ain’t their thang and ‘A Simple Answer’, weighing in at a testing 6 minutes long makes no exception.

But this track is lovingly written. A grand piano riff punctuated by marching drum patterns and organ are led by melancholic crooning from Daniel Rossen, who yearns for a lover wandering the freezing North American tundra to return home. A light on the frozen horizon is both Rossen’s lover’s guide home that also “calls you (the lover) back to mind” for Rossen. There’s subtle injections of saxophone and strings dotted between the verses and chorus that add flavor to a track that just manages to avoid feeling unnecessarily lengthy.

‘A Simple Answer’ is nothing really in the vein of the more urgent pace of ‘Yet Again‘, their first single from ‘Shields’ and is more akin to what die-hard fans will find familiar.

For everyone else, give it time. Single worthy or not, it’s would make a gem of an album track anyway. A very rewarding listen but don’t expect to hear it aired on day time Radio 1 anytime soon.

By Owen Sheppard



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