Berlin via London artist Bearcubs has announced the release of his new sophomore album, Early Hours, a true testament to his readiness to defy genres. Released on 15th May via Independently Popular, Early Hours follows on from Jack Ritchie’s critically acclaimed debut Ultraviolet.
Featuring ten tracks that hit with Ritchie’s light yet soulful tones and modern cinematic sound, he expressed that the new album is a “tangled day dream of different experiences [that include] living in London, working in a pub whilst trying to write music, transient relationships, friendships lost and gained again, loneliness in the city, the hazy euphoria of partying and being up till the early hours with your friends around you, thoughts of the real world out of mind.”
Title track ‘Early Hours’ sets the tone for the album with layers of atmospheric samples, muted synths and punchy beats laid beneath Ritchie’s soulful vocals. The ambience created, like a euphoric daydream, is accented with sampled vocals and welcomes the listener to Bearcubs’ world. This beautifully produced, electronic world takes you on a journey as the album transitions through genres from slow burning RnB tracks such as ‘Early Hours’ and the delicate soundscapes and thick synth pads of ‘Changedmymind’, before building to upbeat, joyful tracks such as ‘Rubicon Guava’ and ‘Everyplace Is Life’. All tracks welcome in any late night playlist.
Released as the album’s first single and collaborating with fellow Berliner narou, ‘Overthinking’ is a dreamy, nostalgic hit, littered with RnB-infused synths, tropical steel drums and rich vocals that glide across the track.
The tracks all have their own personality, whilst blending seamlessly through their tight production and atmospheric soundscapes. ‘Screentime’ features this kind of brooding, RnB, infused atmosphere, with Ritchie’s light weaving vocals almost narrating over the bass line. ‘DLT’ featuring la Ioye similarly echoes this feel of the album, with sparse synths leaving space for Ritchie’s clear vocals and la Ioye’s beautiful tone. Definitely a song for when the party ends.
Ritchie leads you on an airy introspective daydream of life in the Early Hours, with a variety that gives each track its own identity. Whether it be dancing until the early hours, daydreaming at 4am, or working late, this album is the perfect accompaniment to jumping into another world.
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Image courtesy of Nicolas Blanchadell.