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Bear in Heaven: I Love You, It's Cool

C

Bear In Heaven

Album: I Love You, It’s Cool
Label: Dead Oceans

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The third full-length from Bear In Heaven, I Love You, It’s Cool, opens on a high with “Idle Heart,” a pulsing electro-rock kicker that seems like an invitation to even grander things to come. There’s a moment in the song, a quick bout of echoed distortion, when things feel that they could really go right. But by the second track, “The Reflection Of You,” frontman Jon Philpot’s wishy-washy vocals get pulled under the drone of too much reverb, and I Love You, It’s Cool starts to show itself as a monumental drag. 

There’s little to grab onto beyond that first track. The middle of I Love You, It’s Cool is a long plateau of distant-sounding buzz, like a stereo left on in the background in another room. Perhaps better suited to headphones than synth-pop arena theatrics, I Love You, It’s Cool is full of electronic detail, with layers upon layers of synths and effects processors coating the record. But over the course of 10 very similar-sounding tracks, it’s just too much. 

The overindulgence comes off as an indistinguishable wall of sound and, even worse, as a terrific bore. As a band of technical experimentalists, Bear In Heaven fiddles endlessly and shows little restraint. And while that may have worked well on the first two albums, by this third effort, it feels like a rather outdated way of doing things.