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The xx, Grizzly Bear CL Recommends

When: Sat., June 15 2013
Price: $35-60
GRIZZLY BEAR Too many of today’s buzz bands provide little to no actual buzz. Either their retromania seems intent on proving Rock Is Dead For Real This Time, or their innovations are soulless genre mash-ups oblivious to the idea that music fans tend to like good songs, too. This Brooklyn group flirted with the latter category with their 2004 debut, Horn of Plenty, where they sounded like a Sung Tongs-era Animal Collective knock-off. But beginning with 2006’s Yellow House, and especially over 2009’s Veckatimist and last year’s excellent Shields, Grizzly Bear corralled their experiments into ambitious pop songs that occasionally recall Pet Sounds-Beach Boys (try the lovely “Two Weeks” from Veckatimist or “Yet Again” from Shields). What Grizzly Bear really excels at though is making all that ambition sound intimate — impressionistic lyrics draped in lush textures that sound both organic and other-worldly. The band has begun to branch off into all manner of other side projects, but you hope they keep this unit together as the future bodes well for a band that doesn’t forget rule No. 1 – songs still matter. Opening for The XX, one of those buzz bands providing little actual buzz.
— John Schacht


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