Songs For Polar Bears review by Snow Patrol

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  • Released: Apr 25, 2006
  • Sound: 6
  • Lyrics: 8
  • Overall Impression: 6
  • Reviewer's score: 6.7 Neat
  • Users' score: 7.8 (11 votes)
Snow Patrol: Songs For Polar Bears

Sound — 6
Even if I am taking into account that this was some of the earliest work from Snow Patrol, the sound is very amateurish and sounds like it needs a lot of work, especially when compared to some of their most recent works ("Final Straw" and "Eyes Open"). As most bands are with their earliest works, Snow Patrol will have just been finding their feet and discovering which style of music best suits them. All this alternative style that they have produced on [B]Songs For Polar Bears[/B] sounds like someone has thrown a load of different compositions into a washing machine and let it spin. It isn't them at all. The best track, sound wise, has to be "Mahogany", which is a beautiful acoustic piece. The worst track for sound is, basically, any of the others that you choose.

Lyrics — 8
As always, Lightbody produces brilliant lyrics and vocals, but it is painfully apparant that he wasn't as experianced as he is now. Some of the vocals get very out of place in various songs and bring them down a little (along with the sound, as I have said). If I'm being reasonable, the vocals are the best thing about this album. The best vocals, for me, are on "Mahogany" (Again) and the worst are on "NYC", as there are only 4 different lines repeated over and over and over.

Overall Impression — 6
If you're looking for classic Snow Patrol with beautiful lyrics, masterful guitars and bass with crisp production quality, this isn't it. I wouldn't waste your money on an album like this when you could buy "Final Straw" or "Eyes Open" for the same price, when you can listen to either of them albums over and over again and not get bored. I wasted 10 on this. Oh well, at least I got 1 or 2 good tracks off it.

6 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Paul Lambeth
    Strange, I enjoyed it; it's classically experimental, and not mainstream at all. I enjoy listening to the experimenting and recognising how Lightbody and Co. have turned their music into a style that suits them. Mahogany is, I agree, the best on the album. Last Shot Ringing From My Ears is good as well, and if you're a collector, "Little Hide" is a great classic piece, as it contains the recording the message telling them to change their name because of a potential law suit against "Polar Bear". It's good if you like abstract and dirty - you don't get abstract and dirty nowadays, everything's always cleaned up.
    belavista man
    Yeah, I see what you mean. It's always good to see how a band was established and how they developed from what they were to what they are. But, all in all, the album as a whole was still pretty bad. You have to admit though, that Mahogany (yes, that song again) is the best thing on here, with Last Shot Ringing In My Ears, which you have already said, but songs like NYC and Absolute Gravity bring the album down. NYC was pretty good in sound but, lyrically, it sucked. Absolute Gravity was just bad altogether. I think with that song they were trying to latch on to the whole idea of using mixing decks in rock music, yet they failed badly. You're right, it is very experimental, but the result is a bit of a Frankenstein's monster for me - Both gone wrong, yet both powerful, somehow.
    I haven't heard any of the other Snow Patrol records. But I really love this record.
    I wouldnt waste money on anything else but this album! production isnt great (hey the studios they recorded in were shit believe me)
    Deirdre Mac
    I really loved this album..alot of people say that snow patrol have gone too comercial and lost their sound...but if u listen to this album it sounds like the others....Velocity Girl and Starfighter Pilot are my favourite songs