Album Reviews

Music You Don't Know You Like Yet

BOY & BEAR

Harlequin Dream

2014-02-28

Boy & Bear is an Australian indie rock-folk band that formed in 2009. The five-piece group is made up of Dave Hosking, Killian Gavin, Tim Hart, Jon Hart, and Dave Symes. They released their first record, Moonfire, in August 2011, which has since gone platinum, garnering the group a large fan base in Australia and Western Europe. Harlequin Dream was released in August 2013 in Australia and reached #1 on the ARIA Albums Chart in its first week. The first single, "Southern Sun," opens the album with Hosking's soft vocals, but immediately moves into their grooving strums beneath smooth lyrics. "Harlequin Dream" draws from the groups' indie rock genre but also incorporates a jazz swing that becomes apparent as the trumpet breaks in for a solo. The pain of heartbreak is complicated in the lilting power of "Three Headed Woman" as Hosking's apologizes for his unknown mistakes. Harsh guitars and heavy drums set the anger that boils just beneath the surface of "Bridges" apart from the previous songs. Soft banjo playing opens "A Moments Grace," giving space for Hosking's heart-wrenching vocals to rise above the music. The musicality of the group makes its greatest impact in "End of the Line," with genre bending vocals and instrumentation. The album closes with "Arrow Flight," an easy ride home.
Richard Martin

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