‘Wilderness End’ from Bearpark - decidedly different and distinct

(November 22, 2015)

Bearpark, the latest solo project of multi-instrumentalist Nicholas Hirst, has released Wilderness Enda mixture of acoustic and electric folk, rock and brass with pedal organ, sound samples and electronica. The result is something decidedly different and distinct, involving but at the same time gloomy, and bearpark-wilderness-endsomewhat despondent. That of course may be the intention as even the more melodic and upbeat tracks echo an enduring sadness.

The lyrics are poetic but on occasion obscure and demanding. That also may be no accident because according to the press release, the album covers a tumultuous decade in the life of a boy from rural Essex and his conflicting urban experiences in London, which could also be the source of the sense of melancholy.

That said there's much to engage the listener. One important point to note is this album needs to be taken as a whole. When you pick and choose songs the continuity fades. Listen to ‘Wilderness End’ as an entity, including the sometimes slightly disturbing electronics. Because that’s an important part to the overall feel and progression through the album. Listen from ‘Boxers’ and ‘All Fall By’ through ‘Crows’ and ‘Turn Around Take a Bow’ to ‘Little Black Holes’ and ‘Battle Hymn for the Republic’ and the flow will reveal itself. Definitely a project to enjoy.


 Review: Charlie Elland

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