Bear's Den - 'Red Earth & Pouring Rain'

8/10

After releasing their enigmatic debut 'Islands' back in the 2014, the then three-piece Bear's Den were part of a surge of mood-driven musicians who were looking to create a more progressive side to the pop music frame. Now down to just two members, the band has returned with a concept album of sorts, 'Red Earth & Pouring Rain'.

While it isn't much of a concept, the band have admitted that they wanted to create an album that sounded great to drive to. With that in mind, you do get a real sense of freedom and exploration in the record. Backed with a simple beat, this new material has a far more cohesive direction than their debut and fits the bill as to what a good album should be; succinct, diverse and, most of all, enjoyable.

While their brooding atmosphere is still an acquired taste to some, it is clear that the group have seen what worked and what didn't from their debut and have returned with a far more purposed sound. A rich and beautiful release that sees them heading in the right direction.

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