Review Summary: Watching fireworks in parking lots
I first stumbled across Bears and Bright Lights’ self-titled EP when I was a freshman in high school, far too young to understand the Get Up Kids reference in the final track. I would ponder over the title for hours-- the song was undoubtedly about love lost and vocalist Zach West was undoubtedly male, so why was the tune dedicated to another very male-sounding “Matt Pryor”? After weeks of contemplation and running through the three tracks ad nauseam on iTunes, I came to the extremely logical conclusion that West was obviously homosexual, and I had absolutely no problem with that.
Whether male or female, it’s evident that someone ripped West’s heart out on Bears
and never really bothered to give it back. This is the kind of wound that never completely heals, because Bears are too busy reliving it again and again and again until all of a sudden, time has flown out the window and we’re stuck lamenting “unfinished lines and wasted time”, or as “There, Sort of Blue Grey” so simply puts it-- “Oh my God/it’s another wasted year.” But Bears aren’t a bunch of sadsacks. This is the stuff that summer nights are made out of, the process of building new memories and maybe, finally, letting go of old ones. It’s the promise of the first day of a second life rather than the final day of the first.
I often sit back and wonder how I ever liked the EP when I first heard it, when nostalgia to me meant Legos and Spiderman rather than her
, or them
, or that night
. It doesn’t matter because I loved it then and I still do. If you have fifteen minutes to spare, listen to this. If you have a sweet tooth for 90s emo and pop-punk-fueled nostalgia, listen to this. If you’re alive, listen to this.