On November 20th, Bearings officially released their Sophomore album and it provided everything a person could possibly want and need. It varies from the classic pop punk sound to an acoustic Beatles-esque track all while bringing forth a portion of the emo-rap movement. The record is one that if you play it out of order on any listen, you won’t get the same feeling and emotion that pours out from each track and the same blending from one onto the next. As Dougie Cousins (lead singer) has said in previous interviews, Bearings music is essentially up for interpretation and what a listener takes from a song is their own. For myself, after listening to this record for a week straight, it’s a storyline of the past. A relationship that meant everything from the beginning and all the way up until the end. Each track gives a sight into it.
The record begins with “Better Yesterday”, the track that gives the story from start to finish. It’s one of the many that sticks to the status quo of a pop punk track that includes a killer guitar riff. The first two minutes and forty one seconds of the record gives the listener a road map to what has and will happen throughout the entirety of it. Which then goes into the second track, “Sway” and while as a single it didn’t seem to have much meaning except reigning from the early 2000’s. Once again if you take a listen to it in its place on the track list and within the storyline, you get the sense of filling a void; an emptiness of what was and attempting to be okay with it.
While each song may certainly not be based around a past relationship and just be one of those songs that became a filler, it doesn’t seem that way even with the next song which is “Super Deluxe”. A song that sounds like Alex DeLeon and The Cab could have taken part in feels like the part of the story where the memories flood back but at a higher rate than before. Without even realizing it in the moment. As to where “So Damn Wrong”, which was one of the tracks that was released by the band late last fall, also sticks to the pop punk status quo but is the one with the attempt of moving forward. It’s almost a conversation between two different people; a past relationship and a future one.
With the first ten minutes and seventy-three seconds out of the way, we go into the first and only acoustic track which also contains a Beatles-esque vibe to it. The fifth track being “Lovely, Lovely” is the essence of wanting to be loved by the person because for so long that’s all they knew. Without it being in the storyline that as the context clue searcher that I am have created, this is one of the tracks that will resonate with the listeners because of its melancholy aura. But, because I search for more of a meaning even if it isn’t there, this song is a need for reassurance. It brings forth the concept of the other person being their yellow; the one that makes them feel alive, whole and at peace with life. Within the first verse, the lines “…Feel like a goddamn anomaly/ I wanna get fucked up in the stars/ with pretty girls and expensive cars…” The stars could simply be the stars in the sky or they could be the stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Which coincidentally, Hollywood is a place that people tend to go to escape or to find a different version of themselves.
Which then takes us into “Love Me Like You Did” which is one of the songs that you can find yourself screaming along to because in some way or another, you are able to resonate with it. It’s a song of memories in moments. There’s almost a connection to “Super Deluxe” in the sense that they become embodied by the past while trying to move forward and somehow becoming entranced by all these memories that come flooding back. But at the same time it’s a plea for this person to come back because they believe nobody will ever love them quite like that one person did. There is so much raw pain and passion within the lyrics of this person saying their love is essentially what got them through everything so much that they became embodied in it.
The storyline continues and within the next few songs it gets even stronger to the point where my Bachelors in English is really going to start showing. We’ve had the yellow turning into the Hollywood lights of a bright red to wanting and pleading for a love that was so strong and present and can’t be comparable to any other and then into our next song which is “Over Now”, the be-all and end-all or at least that’s what we’d like to think. Our seventh track is a show off to the past. Flaunting that they’re over them and while accepting that “Our love was good love/ But didn’t grow/ I hope that you know it’s over now.” It’s proof in three minutes and two seconds that they know it’s all in the past and what has been said is done. But, not too fast because we have the last three tracks that contradict that one.
To start off on the trilogy of hurt hearts, angry and bitter feelings is “Dreams”. Our one and only emo-rap track on the album. It is one that is completely unexpected by the band but one that was incredibly important to have in the track list and in the exact placement that it is in. It’s a hazy drunken feeling of mentally getting over a relationship. It gives the sense of it being the next day after a fall out and the curtains are closed, not letting in any sunlight. The person is lazily pacing the room with a bottle in one hand and their phone in the other, attempting to comprehend what had just happened. Once you get to this song you listen to it and you’re like “wow, Bearings really did that” because of the beat but once you listen to the lyrics you’re like “ouch, Bearings really said that.” The messiness of the track portrays the messy feeling within their own minds and without this person they’re so sad and it’s worse because they miss the other so much and they just want the pain to stop. So, we’re given the hazy and foggy mental aspect of it all.
Being so close to the end, what more can happen? How much more of a storyline can we possibly get? Well, the next one is the other half of the bands release from late last fall. “I Feel It All” is an out of body, whirlwind experience that has a strong desire to move forward but with each step leading that way, one foot steps back into the past. It’s also a moment in all of these feelings and emotions to actually take a second and relish in what actually has happened. The heartbreak, the hazy feeling, all of it comes into this song and every single thought and feeling comes rushing through this one person’s brain and then we drift into the very last track of the record. There is a lot to say about the record so far and each listener will have their own perception on how each track plays out but for “Transient Colours” to be the last track was by no means a mistake on any level.
By definition, the word “transient” means: “lasting only for a short time; impermanent” and that is the feeling you get after a relationship. After spending every second of every minute of every hour of every day with another human being and becoming a piece of them, you inevitably become transient. The song is simply an angry, bitter, hurt song. It begins and ends with yelling into a void of nothingness and everything in between is an ode to the past. It’s saying that they’ll never stop loving the person even though they’re apart but they aren’t fully because they see that person in the stars. When you bring in the definition of transient and the lyric of “wondering simple things in transient colours” it’s all because this person sees everyone else as impermanent and temporary as if they’re fleeting but the other person is in the stars and they’re always going to be there. It’s bitter and there is evident pain within the lyrics that is masked by heavy drums and guitars but there are multiple odes to what once was because in the end, that’s all they’ve ever known and it’s home, a safety feeling. But it also becomes an acknowledgment of while having lost the yellow in what they knew, they end up swimming in a sea of red.
Most records go from song to song and each one has their own meaning but when you bring in a concept album such as this one, you get so much more. The underlying thematic from each song brings forth more than you could ever imagine and that’s only your interpretation. Most Sophomore albums are detrimental and can be a hit or miss and Bearings simply did not miss on this one and when live shows return back into our lives, we can only hope to see this story explode right in front of our very eyes. So, in conclusion this is a record that should be played on every single format, in every single car, home, headphones. It’s everything one could hope for and for some, it might be that one thing they can cling on and know that they aren’t alone in this big scary world.
Everything Bearings can be found on their social medias under BearingsBand and on their website Bearingsband.com