On Track: ambient messages of strength from bell’s roar

On Track: ambient messages of strength from bell’s roar

The anticipated new album from bell’s roar, We Carry Us, will drop this Friday (Jan. 12) and ahead of its release–and the Art Funds Art tour that kicks off in February–we’re prepping with its two singles. 

“Celebrate” is the pepped-up track that dropped in early December 2017, and the song was accompanied by a music video that feels lighter than air. Shot at several landmark Albany locations, its subject dances and skips–so freely and joyfully that one aches to join in. We are welcomed in by swirling synth and building drums, soon joined by the bright and sparkling vocals of Sean Desiree (they, them) AKA bell’s roar:  “It’s okay to protect yourself,” they sing. “Let in light and nothing else.”

It’s a breath of fresh air in a time that feels heavy with, dare I say it, fire and fury. Despite our positive notions for the new year, we were accosted with the usual drama and plight of our current state, a reminder that we are only one year in. “Celebrate” doesn’t just shove past this negativity. It addresses the deeply ingrained issues that have poisoned society long before our volatile resident of the Oval Office settled in. 

“There’s a deep weirdo living within us that has been suppressed,” bell’s roar states in the music video’s description. “This song is about pushing out all that silences us. Let’s celebrate everything about us and fight against the trauma of racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism that tries to control us.”

The album’s single and title star “We Carry Us” dropped back in November, coined by bell’s roar as “a love letter to my LGBTQ community.” They’re rocking their listeners into a meditative state, murmuring messages of reciprocal support: “I didn’t know I needed your light / I let it in, I kept it in / When we’ve learned to love all that we’ve got / We can’t be stopped.” There’s an obvious theme here, a celebration of love and light that feels right at home in the impossibly soft and soulful vocals of Desiree and the steady beating instrumentals. Everything feels like support, reassurance, clarity. Peppered with uptempo hints of sax and synth, the track pairs beautifully with “Celebrate”–offering up a soundtrack to move to, a soundtrack to bliss out to, a soundtrack that carries. 

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