You.MayDie.In.The.Desert – Bears in the Yukon

Bears in the Yukon

Seattle three piece You.May.Die.In.The.Desert hustle out tight, bubbling post rock on their new album, Bears in the Yukon. Math guitar figures seamlessly splice bits of harmless chaos into these otherwise melodically buoyant compositions. Although prone to redundancy, the album is a success.

All 7 tracks on Bears in the Yukon are beset with melody. The electric guitar runs through lots of pull offs treated with a digital delay. This creates a cascade of scales and notes. But nice as this is, the tight rhythm section often steps up and takes lead. Syncopated bits of math rock rarely interrupt song flow. The solid musicianship and the music’s nimble feel and movement make this work.

Opener, “Ocean Floor Hijinks”, conveys a restless anticipation eased by the track’s accessible beat. Next, “Can I Get More Steel in My Monitors” flexes rhythmically, cozying up to some syncopated jazz spots. Before long, the rhythms settle as the song works through its seven minutes. “The Writer’s Audience is Always a Fiction” chips away at the high hat and drums before succumbing to thinly layered melodies and wafting bass lines.

But by the end of track 3, it’s clear that the remaining tracks will stylistically sound a lot like the first. This does not mean the album gets boring. It just won’t get any better.

Bears in the Yukon‘s other flaw is the quality of guitar distortion. Most of the electric guitar work is clean. But the occasional use of distortion sounds limp when it should be surging through the album’s climaxes.

But Bears in the Yukon endures. Fans of Pinback, Four Tet, Don Caballero, Explosions in the Sky, and Tortoise will find something to bite into. So if you like instrumental post rock, You.May.Die.In.The.Desert is the newest flavor.