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Pink Polar Bear

Stoner-rock anthems by three dudes in Herman

by | Jan 21, 2021

Pink Polar Bear
Pink Polar Bear

I envy anyone up in the Herman, Maine, area who got a chance to see Pink Polar Bear live in the before times. On its debut EP, this playfully poignant stoner-rock trio (Joshua Paul McLaughlin on drums and vocals, James Leo McLaughlin III on guitar, Randall Edward Burke on bass) delivers its morbid, skeptical, eat-the-rich anthems with a free-wheeling attitude that must translate well on stage. “I can see so clearly / That Monsanto is tryin’ to kill me,” McLaughlin growls on “Time to Chop Off Their Heads,” as a bluesy, party-metal riff poses a question: if high-level corporate corruption has us shaking our heads, isn’t that one step away from banging them? On the slower-paced “Solar Storms and Violent Seas,” the band evokes some sort of end-times battle in a Scandinavian ocean, using the Norwegian word for “sun dog” in the opening verse: “Solhund sunset green and red.” Clocking in at over seven minutes, the track takes its time to set a mood, its calm, rolling chords forming inexorably, like slow-motion waves that will kill us all. On other tracks, the band mourns Death himself, and mocks those other gods who are deaf to our prayers. So why is Pink Polar Bear such a fun listen? Because, like the band’s pink-on-black color scheme, no matter how dark the backdrop might get, it’s overwhelmed by the bright, bold, gleeful energy of these three guys from Herman.

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