tue 26/09/2017

CD: Dinosaur Jr - Give a Glimpse of What Yer Not | reviews, news & interviews

CD: Dinosaur Jr - Give a Glimpse of What Yer Not

CD: Dinosaur Jr - Give a Glimpse of What Yer Not

J Mascis and co deliver a fuzzy blast that does everything right… again

Cornwall missed the EU subsidies

In an age where things change at a lightning pace, where we are programmed for progress, touchstones are crucial. There’s a need for something we can rely on to remain solid, unchanging and free of the burden of momentum. The noise produced by Dinosaur Jr, which comprises J Mascis, Lou Barlow, drummer Murph and others, is just such a thing – gloriously monolithic and fondly familiar.

On this, the band’s 11th studio album, there is, if anything, an echo of past glories. Indeed, when the clatter and drums of “Goin' Down” starts up, their 1987 sophomore statement of intent, You’re Living All Over Me, springs to mind and it’s almost impossible to reconcile the near-30-year gap between the two albums.

Meanwhile, the chiming top notes that hover above the heads-down backline of "Be a Part" carry the same, nascent shimmer as their 1985, self-titled debut. Give a Glimpse… is a far better recorded album, but the melodic obsessions haven’t shifted much, and the fact that Mascis can stll mould new shapes from the same clay is to his great credit. Meanwhile, tucked away between these two songs is “Tiny”, a song that demonstrates exquisitely Mascis’ innate ear for a pop tune, something that has always put him at the head of his class, along with Lemonheads’ Evan Dando and Buffalo Tom’s Bill Janovitz.

Dinosaur Jr do plaintive beautifully and Give a Glimpse of What Yer Not is shot through with a mournful melancholy. Mascis’ trademark cracked chords and sorrowful solos are augmented perfectly by two Lou Barlow compositions, “Love Is” and album closer “Left/Right”, which rank among the Sebadoh frontman’s best for the band.

It would be wrong to claim there’s been no movement at all – it’s just that it’s gradual, natural, and at a rate that's almost imperceptable. A key case in point here is possibly the best song since the band’s 2005 reunion. “Mirror”, although benefitting from the genetic legacy of older songs (“Quest” in particular), refuses to retread old ground, opting instead to continue down the same path – it’s what they’ve always done after all. Like Alan Partridge, Dinosaur Jr don’t revolve, they evolve.

@jahshabby

The noise produced by Dinosaur Jr is gloriously monolithic and fondly familiar

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Editor Rating: 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)

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