There is nothing quite like live music, and Boy & Bear are some of the best live performers Australia has on offer. After all, when you've been at it as long as they have (discovered by Triple J in 2009, so 7 years give or take) you're bound to have learnt why touring is "the gold mine of the music business".
The thing about a band like Boy & Bear, 5 mates from Sydney's northern beaches, is that they don't polarise anyone. Which potentially could be viewed as a negative, but why cause tension, music should be inclusive and that's where the lads really shine.
Kicking off their Australian tour in the prestigious Odeon Theatre in Hobart, Tasmania, the doors weren't even open and people are already queuing down Liverpool Street. Highlighting their diverse pull, age and demographic isn't an issue for a gig like this. And with a venue as relaxed as the Odeon, the stage really was set.
Opening with the slightly Harry Potter obsessed Sydney-sider Montaigne, who although on the tiny side of things has a voice that is larger than life. I'd previously only heard this lady on her studio recordings, but just between you and me, the raw power of Montaigne is something that was definitely designed for gigs. Following in her footsteps, the second opening act took to the stage with perhaps even more gusto. Despite being nice and warmed up from Montaigne's set, the lads of Art of Sleeping played a heavier set but succeeded in getting the crowd to join in on the chorus. The perfect pair of openers for a beer-and-tees type of event.
The most endearing feature of Boy & Bear's live performances is undoubtedly lead vocalist Dave Hosking's dorky dance moves. You really didn't feel self-conscious dancing after that; it's a special talent to be able to pull it off as effortlessly as Hosking.
Opening with their latest track, Limit of Love, the show took off in style. Mixing back and forth between the older tunes, which really got the crowd singing, and teasing their latest album for anyone who was still unfamiliar. All while having a stage presence that was completely worth standing up for. With Hobart as the first show of the tour I would've forgiven a few hiccups, but - pats on the back all round - the gig only proved why the guys have remained so well loved.
A packed theatre, several slightly intoxicated audience members and some seriously ace music, it was a show that suited everyone. There's a saying that says something about not being able to make friends with salad (which is potentially true) but man, can you make friends by playing Boy & Bear.
BOY & BEAR – LIMIT OF LOVE TOUR
Art of Sleeping and Montaigne.
presented by triple j
| HORDERN PAVILION, SYDNEY NSW
Tickets available from www.ticketek.com.au | 132 849 | All Ticketek Outlets
| RIVERSTAGE, BRISBANE QLD