If you’re into the alt-rock scene at all, you already know who Bear Hands are. If you’re not, you owe it to yourself to check them out. These guys from Brooklyn put on an outstanding show in support of X Ambassadors at the Egyptian Room at Old National Centre last Saturday night.
They opened with the catchy, synth-y “ Back Seat Driver (Spirit Guide), and played a musically diverse 11-song set that alternated between songs from their latest album, “Fake Tunes,” and their older releases. (And Bear Hands, if you’re reading this, I absolutely love your word play on “Back Seat Driver (Spirit Guide)” and “Fake Tunes!” Two thumbs’ up from this reviewer!) My personal favorite was “Agora,” which coincidentally happens to be one of their biggest hits. The set ended with “Giants,” which was a huge crowd favorite, as well.
When it was time to perform “Blue Lips” the first release from “Fake Tunes,” the band welcomed Ursula Rose on the stage. The sultry singer/rapper, who co-wrote the song with lead singer/guitarist Dylan Rau, was spot-on for her performance, earning the crowd’s admiration. I expect to see/hear more from her – just sayin’.
Bear Hands, which consists of Rau, Val Loper on bass, and TJ Orscher on drums, is often called experimental. And if you take the time to listen closely to their music, you’ll hear the subtleties that make them stand out from the rest of the alt-rock word. And although their live performance isn’t something that inspires head-banging, they play with such feeling and skill that concertgoers are drawn into the experience, which is somehow energizing and calming at the same time.
There are only a few dates left on Bear Hands’ tour with Vérité and X Ambassadors – be sure to check them out if at all possible!