Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Sound engineering by Patrick Stolley
We think that Bear In Heaven is extrasensory. We think that you can immediately hear that too. It's one of those things that you believe you can, but can't put a finger on, but something's there and it's likely even more overwhelming and overpowering when it's acting on you personally and not merely being observed. There isn't anything that gives it away, per se, just that the songs on the band's latest full-length, "Beast Rest Forth Mouth," make one feel as if they've been led into a haunted house and then had the world's brightest floodlights flipped on surprisingly for observance, only all of this happens without any of those lights. Or maybe, it's not being done to us at all, just to others, the writers, though the sound is so strong and so inner and prevailing that it feels like a violation - like a mind-reading, like an emotional scan, a fine-toothed detailing of everything good, bad or indifferent that we have strolling through us at any given time. It's a thumping and a pulsing that seems as if it's burrowing up from far below our skin, cropping up like dandelions and crab grass, irritatingly in-your-face. Bear In Heaven - a band of Southerners all now living in Brooklyn with the masses - makes music the way that it seems as if blood is made: with a lot of intricate steps, a lot of complicated maneuvering that no one can really fully understand or explain and yet with an involuntarily simplicity and need. It just happens. It comes out and perhaps that's exactly why it feels so stunning and so warping, so poignant and coincidentally so abstract and googly. Lead singer and songwriter Jon Philpot's lyrics are ultimately resemblances of loves and the dangers associated with contracting the fever - THAT FEVER, of getting involved with others beside yourself, but they are also cryptic looks at all kinds of personal dilemmas that have absolutely nothing to do with any other person but the one speaking and emoting. He winds us through the hot ass coils that we bear with when we're submerged in the waters and unwilling or unable to come up for air. There are freaky skitterings and scatterings and bends and shakes and we're breaking out into hives just thinking about it all. He gets us to the point where the hives set in and to where we're loosening our shirt collars to get some cooler, freeing air down to our overheating chests. Everything seems a tiny bit calm and a lot bit out of control on "Beast Rest Forth Mouth," and we take it in, welcoming the dysfunction, letting it rest on us like a comforter and a sheet. We get to feeling that there might in fact be no saving grace in letting any of our innate, over-performing, household functions act and act and act. They get us into these kinds of messes, the ones that Philpot, Adam Wills and Joe Stickney throw us into on a song like "Beast In Peace," where Philpot sings, "Thunder is expanding like your face into the ground/Thunder is expanding and the rain will wear you down/The best times were better when we didn't need to think/The ego, our monster, is pulling down our feet/Let's chance it all and cut the beast we are free/And don't bother leaving now, we're already gone." And it could be that the blissful removal from here, from this existence, is all the heaven that's needed. Or it could just be all there is - these messes, these monologues that place us in our disorder.
Bear In Heaven Official Site