On their debut album, Ears Will Pop and Eyes Will Blink, it takes Los Angeles-based Bodies of Water approximately 45 seconds to reach their thesis statement: "You do not need to own guitars/You do not need a set of drums/All you need is your throat and mine/To lift noise up to God." Now, that's not to say we're talking about some sort of hipster version of Rockapella here: The members of Bodies of Water are more than proficient at a number of instruments. No, it's just that, upon first listen to Ears Will Pop, one thing asserts itself directly into the foreground and never lets up—the unflappable singing.
Taking cues from Talking Heads, Arcade Fire, and the Polyphonic Spree—plus a little prog-rock as well—Bodies of Water jaunt their way through the art-house with a capital-B Big sound, one that resonates and explodes with classic gospel-like ferocity. However, the sonic glue that ties together their foray into roots-rock, California soul, and gospel is the four members' singing. Operating closer to a high school choir than an indie rock band, the co-ed band marches up and down the scales, looping their voices in and out, creating wall-of-sound harmonies that act as an independent fifth member. They relentlessly "oh oh oh" and "bop bop bop" their way to pop euphoria, building songs to the point where singing at the top of their lungs seems like a natural conclusion.
Clocking in around 60 minutes, Ears Will Pop never once lets up, holds back, or stops short. With a record this far-reaching in magnitude, Bodies of Water's intent to "lift noise up to God" would have simply fallen apart had they not given it their all, but because they emphatically and enthusiastically give their music everything they can muster, the payoff, for the listener, is nothing short of cathartic. One listen will leave you excited, two listens will leave you inspired, and anything more will leave you ready to embark on whatever crusade the band wishes.