Out of the magical woods of Portland, Oregon emerges the band The Golden Bears: An act led by Seth Lorinczi and Julianna Bright. The band’s second full-length album Write It Like You Find It (Jealous Butcher Records) is a collection of songs dedicated to the couple’s newborn daughter. The album is a new approach to typical boy/girl songwriting, presenting common themes of young parents who immediately are forced to look at life in a new way once they have to share it with a creation of their own. The couple recorded Write It Like You Find It in their home studio with friends including Dave Depper (Ram Project, Fruit Bats, Loch Lomond) and John Moen (The Decemberists, Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks, Dharma Bums). Various contributors from THE BOMBER JACKET commented on the record:
The Golden Bears’ Write It Like You Find It is far from the conventional rock album. Many of the album’s songs are full-band tracks, replete with electric guitar solos and strings, but then at some point, whether it’s during the first or third track, one notices that The Golden Bears are playing music for some higher purpose. The “purpose” is the couple’s newborn daughter, who plays a central role in many of the album’s tracks. With songs like “Lightning” and “All the Birds,” Bright and Lorinczi make parenting seem cool and hip, turning story time into fabulous rock ballads and calming lullabies.
The first immediate reaction is that the album seems like it would fit in well at a roadhouse bar somewhere in the south during the late ‘60s/early ‘70s. A working mother, trying to support her daughter and struggling to make ends meet. While evocative, it’s a vaguely country scene that isn’t for everyone and the well-worn territory can wear on the listener. However, there is a lot of charm to the record’s dedication and it’s enough to carry you through to the end. The homemade production also adds a lot to the album’s storybook quality. There are various times when you can feel the room where the guitarist sits on a wooden stool as the setting light of a mid-summer day flitters through the windows and glass mosaic wind chimes. Through the swinging screen door, children’s voices and footsteps can be overheard on the porch, pattering away through the green grassy yard.
I wanted to like it. Love poem to her daughter, touching. Too bad it feels like an Indie rock Raffi. What nice things can I say? There are decent songs, like “Do You See It” and “Goodbye.” Julianna’s voice is good. The instrumentation is competent and pretty solid. Other than that, the album is boring and I can’t see myself returning to it. If this album was a sandwich, it would be 2 pieces of white bread, a dab of bland mayo spread on one piece and a big hunk of lettuce in the middle covering one lonely cherry tomato. There are small pieces of this album I can dig, but they’re few and forgettable. It won’t kill you to give it a listen, but it won’t enlighten you either. On the plus side, if you played this for a bear, it would probably be lulled into a light slumber, allowing you to escape with your honey.