Word is that Scorsese’s preferred cut for The Wolf of Wall Street is an hour longer than the theatrical release. That’s one whole hour on top of a film that’s already touching three hours. Quentin Tarantino, Richard Curtis, Peter Jackson: all fond of the lengthy cut, all could do with being more unafraid to leave the audience wanting more, rather than half an hour of their lives back.
So let’s hear it for Grizzly Bear, and make a collective wish that other artists in all fields could take a leaf out of their high-standards book.
After breaking through with Vecakatimest in 2009, and their subsequent tour in support of that album, the experimental folk-pop-rockistst Grizzly Bear took some time out before starting on its successor. In the summer of 2011, the band started working on demos and recordings in Marfa, Texas. Feeling they only got a couple of album-worthy tracks out of the sessions, the band decamped and returned to Cape Cod, where they had previously recorded Yellow House in 2005.
An album, Shields was released in 2012. From the Marfa sessions, only Sleeping Ute and Yet Again made the final album cut, but in 2013 an expanded version of the album was released, with eight additional tracks. In a move that should be celebrated by fans and collectors alike, these eight tracks were also given a standalone release as Shields: B-sides. Also to be celebrated is the quality of the new tracks. Leaving aside the three remixes, which are hit and miss, take it or leave it, what’s left is an EP of “captivating sketches” (so says Pitchfork).
It’s quite reassuring, really, to think that a track like Will Calls in this state, was seen as such a crushing disappointment by the band. It’s a lesson that could be well learned by double-LP releasers and directors everywhere.