Naming your band "BEAR" is all good when you actually make music that sounds like a huge fucking bear landing on your head!
And this is the case here. These wild Belgians have managed to take the hardcore/metal background and shoot it to the moon. In my book, their new album entitled Doradus deserves a place right up there with the essentials of tecnhnical and progressive hardcore/metal like Coalesce, Curl Up and Die, early Converge, etc. Putting the cherry on the cake for us, Bear also manage to produce some huge sounding, epic moshing rock (or rocking mosh) that is catchy and tuneful, and goes down well any time of the day. It's awesome to hear some music that retains the true hardcore fury of previous époques, but also goes the extra mile, maintaing an equally badass and intellectual feel all the way through.
When a band plays such an interesting mix of sounds, the production that coats the music is always crucial. On Doradus, Bear packs a crystal clear production sound that creates a wrecking ball out of the twisted metallic riffs and groovy drum patterns; Everything crumples under the undisputed pressure of this solidly built destruction machine! The songs are pretty short for this genre (around the 3 minute mark), which is a good thing. However, Bear manage to squeeze in all the power, intensity and passion in each and every song, as they scoop the best elements from deathcore, progressive/post hardcore, djent, and even good old black metal.
The most important thing that this record reminds us, is that even though it's good to take different elements and mix them into the melting pot, balance and composure (sic) are also essential. It's no good to have an album that sounds like it's made up of guest musicians. That is to say identity is all important for a band, and Bear have that in check. They manage to unite all the influences into something we can simply call hardcore/metal, and which isn't overly progressive and/or tiring. Congrats to Let it Burn records for having a band like this on its roster! I am super happy to see hardcore music still making a progess without losing its touch! Check this shit out!
UPs: Super tight playing, super groovy rhythms, good catchiness factor without going pop, brutal and heavy without being chaotic.
DOWNs: None that I can find.
LOWDOWN: Diligent metallic hardcore making a tour de force, celebrating all extreme music.