Akron/Family take things to a different level with “Silly Bears,” the first track on their new album, S/T II: The Cosmic Birth and Journey of Shinju TNT. As you can tell by the album title, it’s a level you and I don’t live on. We’re down here, in the Midwest, trying to live our lives in between snowstorms, while Akron/Family are way up there, in a land of rainbows, unicorns, and umm, silly bears. How out there is it, you ask? Well, “Silly Bears,” begins with a max-volume arena rock riff, one more fit for pom-pom punk rockers like, Sleigh Bells than a free-form folk band and integrates it with an Animal Collective-like drone and spiraling keyboards. The key line, “Surely you know wherever there’s laughter, dancing, and honey, I’ll be there!” comes around the four-minute mark and is punctuated with a shout. It’s another reminder from the band that they are living on a different plain, a plain inhabited by fanciful creatures, whimsical melodies, and drugs. There’s gotta be lots of drugs out there in Akron/Family’s wonderland, and until you find the right ones, you’ll remain consigned to your regular nine-to-five life. There will be no honey and there will be no dancing, and you will have no idea if “Silly Bears” is a brilliant piece of music or something you will never understand.
S/T II: The Cosmic Birth and Journey of Shinju TNT will be out February 8th on Dead Oceans Records.