The Bunny The Bear


Written by: MN on 04/04/2013 16:26:57

I was initially intrigued to review the new The Bunny The Bear album because someone described their music to me as nonsensecore. Seeing as I have an affinity towards the progressive, the weird, the avant-garde and the downright nerdy and technical sounds out there, I thought perhaps The Bunny The Bear could deliver something along that prism. Not having heard of the band before, I listened through their previous two records to gain an idea before approaching their new release. I was dissapointed to witness that The Bunny The Bear are not what I expected them to be. I finally understood why my fellow reviewers were sniggering behind my back because I chose this record. Their new record "Stories" leaves no place for surprises, it's the same gimmick-ridden manifest where the two vocalists, wearing a bear and a bunny mask respectively, deliver both clean near-falsetto vocals and screams/death-growls to a musical backdrop that sounds like Avicii took some mushrooms, walked into a rock studio, and found The Bunny The Bear wanting to play. Why The Bunny The Bear call themselves post-hardcore completely escapes me. What bothers me the most is that the vocalists aren't actually completely terrible. Had they chosen to stick to writing pop melodies and invested in a proper instrumental section, they could pass for a decent rock band. Combining two bipolar genres rarely works with metal music, even if Skindred did it with reggae, which turned out great in my opinion. The Bunny The Bear prove for the third time that euro-dance should not be combined with metal (or any nearby subgenre).

The album opens with "Eating Disorder", that initially sounds vaguely similar to Coldplay's heartbreaker "The Scientist", but alas, the synthesizer soon takes over and a hardstyle kind of drumming sets The Bunny The Bear off in a prime example of where the anecdote "less is more" makes complete sense; the sound is very muddled, and way over the top. The Bunny, Matthew Tybor, delivers a selection of different screams, the only impressive one being the death-growl which proves his worth, the rest of the screams sound like Insane Clown Posse whining about their lives. On the other end we find the Bear, Chris Hutka, who ironically delivers the clean vocals, and also holds immense potential, but it seems meddled with despite the band clearly expressing that they don't use autotune.

The second track "In like Flynn" is one of the highlights of the album, a shameful indulgence on my part. The melody is stupidly catchy, and I found myself humming it on the bus afterwards. Melodically speaking the songwriting is - for once - not bad, but why do they have to ruin the good melody with a Lady Gaga'esque stomp-and clap rhythm coupled with anxious screaming? The melodious edge continues on the third track "Hey, Allie", showcasing some slightly interesting piano synths, but like many times before, the distorted guitars lack punch and seem either badly produced, or just badly played. "It's not always cold in Bufallo" is perhaps one of the most organic tracks on the record, and finally sounds like a real drum set is being played. "Another Day" sounds like an synth-riddled Owl City track featuring emo singers. Where the hell is the so-called "post hardcore" ? This is pop music, and to be frank, that's what The Bunny The Bear do best!

For a solid three songs more, the dance-like rhythm continues, making the songs seem indistinct and boring. "Your Reasons" breaks the tendency and provides some good clean vocals, making you think that Hutka can definitely sing. The album ends with the melodious "Sadie" which is an attempt at a ballad, containing some acoustic guitars giving more warmth to their sound. Conclusively, this is not a good album, nor are The Bunny The Bear an interesting band, but having released three albums to date with Victory records, there must be a fan base out there and fans will probably be thrilled at "Stories". Personally though, I have already moved on to much better music.

Download: In Like Flynn, Sadie, It's Not Always Cold In Bufallo
For The Fans Of: Skip The Foreplay, Once In A Lifetime

Release Date 16.04.2013
Victory Records

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