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Bambara: Dog Ear Days [Album Review]


Hypnotic is not a term one often associates with punk, but Athens-based trio Bambara fit both molds. At times ethereal and dreamy, at others ferocious and noisy, Bambara mixes elements of the post-punk revival with modern shoegaze and psychedelic noise. Dog Ear Days is a bit of a mystery as its mere existence possesses something strangely magical.

“Repeat After Me” opens the EP with a wild, looped noise riff ripe with feedback that continues even as the aggressive drum beat begins to echo by its side. The band then follows that power opening with the brooding, soft “Drag Hesitation” before again launching into the noise for which they’ve become known.

The noise continues until “Swim With The Trees” where the band again takes it down a notch, but they refuse to give up their penchant for experimentation and atmospheric, swirling guitars. Closing the album, “Chiromancy” is packed with eerie loops and carnal drums. One part psychotic, one part calm, it blends their soft side with their loud side.

Certainly, this is not for everyone. But there are plenty out there who dug Japandroids last year and No Age the year before who might fancy Bambara, and this band’s ability to crank up the volume and get a bit crazy with noise may just top those aforementioned artists in terms of decibel levels. In a way, they’re reminiscent of HEALTH minus the tribal math-y elements.

To call these guys loud would be an understatement, but intense noise does not deaden their ability to be dreamy. They are, truly, their own beast. And like any wild animal, there is something immensely beautiful about it that simply cannot be ignored. True to the predator, this wild animal is best taken in from a distance for fear that it will otherwise consume you.

Download: “Stay Gray” by Bambara
[audio:100809-bambara-stay-gray.mp3|titles=Stay Gray|artists=Bambara]


Emerald Weapon Records [CDEP, 2010]

1. Repeat After Me
2. Drag Hesitation
3. Stay Gray
4. Feed The Pigs
5. Swim With The Trees
6. Chiromancy

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