Seattle thunder-makers Minus The Bear make it transparently clear on their third album Planet Of Ice that the quintet has exceedingly grasped the indecipherable codes encrypted within the manuals of their expensive gadgets, possibly even translating them from Japanese or Chinese or Computer jargon with their superior threshold of intellect, as these boys valorously finger their machine's glowing buttons like a horny cheerleader under the bleachers during the championship game.
These smart kiddos, whom I compare to the cast of the movie Hackers, have successfully avoided the job of serving cheap watered down drinks to collect fat fists of greenbacks for a big daddy barkeep while testing the elasticity of their group mind, which began to think as one six years ago, delivering 2 full lengths, 4 EP's, 1 remix disc and a partridge in a pear tree.
"Burying Luck" belts out nearly five minutes of arctic impetus to open the ten-track time capsule hatched from a century yet to be lived through. "Ice Monster" mournfully sees a loved one slip into the frozen waters of life by an undertow of yesterday. "Part 2" is an ambient adventure on a lonely cyber highway with blinking lights flashing endlessly in your bloodshot eyes as you cautiously search for another chance at this failed life.
"Dr. L'Ling" is a brave slide down Mount Rainer, face first on a sled made of soapy glass with fancy butter varnish to illicit more speed, more adventure, and more stupefying uncertainty. The good doctor prescribes one whopper of a serving. Nearly seven-minutes of bouncing, like a toothpick in a fatso's mouth, savagely digging out chunky remains for repeat satisfaction of a recycled meal.
"Throwing Shapes" is the quickest dinger on the deck of this deep sea explorer which cranks into the ear like a torpedo shot from the ass of Vladimir Putin, the Ruskie president who recently planted his country's commie flag into hidden ice beneath the North Pole.
"Lotus," the climactic closer of this dauntless avalanche, is an unbounded spread of Smuckers smeared from a borrowed knife belonging to Built To Spill or Rush. The Pacific Northwesterners aren't afraid to roll the sleeves us on their flannels, leave their unkempt hair shaggy and proceed to jam with a capital JA. Most often that wipe out session escalates into maddening flames that spin horrendously out of human control and into the care of extra terrestrials. The lackadaisical character descends like a stoned head onto a perfect pillow and as that voyage into the subconscious picture show begins to roll credits, an express charge of chilling guitars and frigid synthesizers awaken you from your cryptic slumber.
Jake Snider's voice shines like Steve Miller and fucks like Sting.
More advantageous than Death Can For Cutie, not as juiced and disorderly as Modest Mouse, Minus The Bear fill the deafening void left by Dismemberment Plan when the D.C. crew had their gear and flesh ripped apart by the vultures of fate. Suicide Squeeze better spackle shut the back catalog because this is Minus The Bear's call to the big leagues, should they choose to play that sort of ball.
Planet Of Ice is a gargantuan broadcast to simultaneous time zones, signaling back to the psychedelic past while formulating a new future of sci-fi rock with a Pentium chip for the upcoming computer-underground.