Release Date: Sep 13, 2011
Record label: Terrible Records
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock
While it can sometimes be hard to separate established artists' other projects from their main gigs, Grizzly Bear’s Chris Taylor demonstrates an ability to distance himself from his other work on the debut of his CANT moniker, Dreams Come True. With an aesthetic rooted in stripped-down electronic pop, the album keeps Taylor’s penchant for deeply layered music intact while stripping away the preciousness, creating a sound that is simultaneously soothing and visceral. The stripped-down, lo-fi sound of songs like “Rises Silent” and “Too Late, Too Far” have a rawness about them that evokes, among other things, the skittering electro-funk of some of Prince’s early pop experiments.
It’s a bit odd that Grizzly Bear’s Chris Taylor would settle on a misleading moniker like “CANT” for his solo compositions considering how much obvious attempt and effort he actually put into the project’s full-length debut, Dreams Come True. Then again, maybe it’s not so much a contraction with a missing apostrophe as a more clever reference to the word derivation of “to sing” or “engage in secret speech. ” Collaborating with George Lewis Jr.
Grizzly Bear's Chris Taylor might be one of the most influential people you don't know. Not only has his band played some type of role in pretty much every single sound to come out of Brooklyn since 2004, he's also had his hand directly inside the process. With his label Terrible Records, he's produced some of the hottest young acts in the independent scene (Twin Shadow, the Morning Benders and Arthur Russell).
As multi-instrumentalist and producer in Grizzly Bear, the first solo work from Chris Taylor comes with some pedigree. Even aside from his band’s much lauded songwriting craft, the records they’ve made since Taylor joined the band are arguably some the best sounding LPs of the last decade. Both Yellow House and Veckatimest are what they are because of their near perfect sonic balance, the way they breathe and move so dynamically, at one moment sounding tranquil before bursting out of the speakers in moments of rapturous climax.
While the rest of Grizzly Bear make the most of the downtime following 2009's excellent Veckatimest, Chris Taylor is doing the opposite: He started a label, produced records for Twin Shadow and Blood Orange, and has now recorded and self-produced Dreams Come True, his first solo venture under the CANT moniker. It's impossible to talk about Dreams without taking a close look at the production. Taylor's done well to craft a particular in-house Terrible Records vibe, and with its abundant stylish synths and zoned-out bass textures, Dreams feels like a compelling mission statement for that sound.
We are spoiled to have the collective brainchild of the four innovative individuals that comprise the Grizzly Bear quartet. Ed Droste and Daniel Rossen lead the Brooklyn maestros into worlds fraught with perfect dynamics, haunting moods, and pitch-perfect harmonies. Truly, few are the number of bands that can match Grizzly Bear’s formidable musicianship.
In late 2009, Grizzly Bear's Chris Taylor made his solo debut under the moniker CANT with the single "Ghosts." Unsurprisingly, it sounded exactly like a Grizzly Bear outtake. Thankfully, CANT's debut LP, Dreams Come True (a collaboration with Twin Shadow's George Lewis Jr.), is a dizzying departure for both artists. The duo wrote and recorded the album in a week and a half following the completion of Twin Shadow's Forget, and the end result is a heady mélange of styles and sounds that charts an unpredictable course.
I certainly had very high hopes for Dreams Come True, Chris Taylor’s first album under the CANT moniker. And who wouldn’t? As one of the principal sound-sculptors behind Grizzly Bear’s romantic art-pop, Taylor has consistently showcased a knack for wrangling out alien hooks and left-field beauty from ordinary tools—a dry, distant electric guitar here, a withered old piano there, a bouquet of choir-boy harmonies just about everywhere. Working with Twin Shadow’s George Lewis Jr.
CANT play the Garrison Friday (October 21). See listing. Rating: NN Grizzly Bear multi-instrumentalist and producer Chris Taylor is a faint, flickering presence on his debut solo album, drifting in and out of a hazy mix of slow-moving synths, syrupy bass lines, skittering beats and rattling percussion. His production has a close-up intimacy that guides the ear to specific details, but that precision suffers from a wider problem - namely, that the melodies aren't sustained long enough to captivate.
Chris Taylor of Grizzly Bear releases his debut solo album. Darren Loucaides 2011 Dreams Come True finds CANT – Grizzly Bear’s Chris Taylor – attempting to push beyond the margins of the band he’s most famous for. It’s the intricacy of that band’s compositions that most find breathtaking (and some a bit suffocating), but while there’s still depth to the more electronic instrumentation on his debut LP, Taylor’s songwriting is rarely complex here.
Wild Flag An alliance of hard-nosed female indie rockers who made their names in the 1990s, Wild Flag brings together Carrie Brownstein (rhythm guitar) and Janet Weiss (drums) from Sleater-Kinney, Mary Timony (lead guitar) from Helium and Rebecca Cole (keyboards) from the Minders. They clearly incite one another on Wild Flag’s self-titled debut album (Merge), which bashes joyfully forward, bringing punky conviction to songs with a shaggy psychedelic fringe. The meeting point for the songwriting is in structures that are pushier than Helium’s and less knotty than Sleater-Kinney’s — in other words, closer to the garage and to Patti Smith’s kind of punk.