Dinosaur Jr. – Give A Glimpse of What Yer Not | Album Review

5th AUGUST 2016 | JAGJAGUWAR | LOVE

Dinosaur Jr. are simply badass. Since the original trio of J, Lou and Murph reformed back in 2007 they have released four albums that have continued to cement the notion that hey, these guys know how to make great music. Whether it’s the pop-tinged sounds of ‘Beyond’, the drawn out alt-rock sounds of ‘Farm’ or the laid back, scuzzy sounds of ‘I Bet On Sky’ Dinosaur Jr. know how to get the best out of three stacked amps and Rickenbacker bass guitars. Their new album Give a Glimpse of What Yer Not sees the band return with another dose of punchy distortion, with a side order of emotion thrown in for good measure too.

‘Goin Down’ kicks things off with a simple but gutsy guitar riff that strikes right to the core as J’s huge amount of distortion blasts out the speakers against Murph’s textural drum crashes and Lou’s enveloping bass notes to create something that’s absolutely full of balls. As with tracks such as ‘Watch The Corners’, ‘Over It’ and ‘Almost Ready’ there’s something about this huge wall of distortion that keeps everything sounding somewhat summery. It’s weird, but definitely helps lift things into a more upbeat vibe.

This is especially true for lead single ‘Tiny’ which features all the distortion in the world yet somehow comes across as a great track to skate along too. The immediate hit of the riffs sink deep into the soul to produce a very satisfied smile. J’s famous drawling vocals drawl all over the sounds which helps keeps things laid back and pretty chill, man. It’s a great track, and the trademark J Mascis guitar solo is solid too.

Things head down a much more melodic route as ‘Be A Part’ and ‘I Told Everyone’ take a breather on the tempo and opt for producing instrumentals that shine in delivering emotive riffs instead. These sombre tracks fit perfectly with J’s vocals as they allow the listener to hear the more pained side of his voice, which tug at the heartstrings some more.

Lou’s contributions as per tradition feature two songs which offer up something a little different to the onslaught of distortion. ‘Love Is…’ turns the volume down a tad, producing a sound that excels in providing lots of space for Lou to croon out some nice lyrics. This track is like the sobered up version of ‘You’re Living All Over Me’’s ‘Poledo’, so it’s great to see that it got it’s act together.

Give A Glimpse of What Yer Not is another superb effort from Dinosaur Jr. While it does follow the similar formula that helped create the likes of ‘I Bet On Sky’ and ‘Beyond’ it does see the band attempt a bit of variety with their sound. The ever expanding guitars produce some of the heaviest material the band have produced in some time (‘Good to Know’, ‘I Walk For Miles’) and the trio do a great job at mixing up the short bursts of thunder with the drawn out storms too. I’m so glad they got back together.

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