Try not to take them for granted; this Dinosaur won't be around forever.Label: Jagjaguwar
Released: August 5th 2016
11 years after they reunited, it's tempting to take it as a given that the original trio of J Mascis, Lou Barlow and Murph are still around. And not just walking the earth, but making records as good as 'Beyond or Farm' - their abrasive, tuneful assault present and correct.
From the second a humming amp gives way to the chugging, fuzzy riff of 'Goin Down', it's business as usual on 'Give a Glimpse of What Yer Not'. "Are you with me, come along," invites Mascis, bass and drums almost tripping over each other to keep up. Tiny follows, buzzing like Teenage Fanclub hyped up on additives, before 'Be A Part''s arpeggios break the pace.
If you come to a Dinosaur Jr album with expectations, 'Give a Glimpse...' definitely delivers - the half-awake vocals and Barlow's fuzzy bass are here, along with Mascis' guitar solos: explosive and needling on 'Tiny', shrill and trebly on 'Good To Know'. Only occasionally is this familiarity a weakness: 'Lost All Day' and 'I Told Everyone' aren't much more than decent Dinosaur Jr songs.
'I Walk For Miles' stands out, though; thick and sludgy, with pitch-black shades of Mascis' doomy side-project Witch. And if what caused the arguments in 1989 was Lou Barlow wanting to write for the band, he's making up for lost time now: the shabby folk-rock of 'Love Is...' and the superb 'Left/Right' are two of the best songs here.
Is album eleven more of a glimpse of what they are than what they're not? Sure. But you can take them to your heart, you can take them or leave them, but try not to take them for granted; this Dinosaur won't be around forever. Rob Mesure