Tuesday night in Brooklyn, Bear’s Den ended their U.S. tour in what bassist, Joey Haynes, calls their second home, New York City. “It’s our favorite city to play, we almost think we play it too much”, he says to a resounding cry of “never’s” and “no’s” from the audience. Bear’s Den always seem humbled and surprised by the crowd that turns up for their shows. But to those of us who know their music, the crowds seem smaller than they should based on the talent that comes out of the three main members of Bear’s Den: Drummer and sometimes guitarist Kevin Jones, vocalist Andrew Davie, and Basest Haynes. Tuesday’s show was even more amazing than usual, since the band got a boost by some special guests on stage. Joining in for a few songs were Remi Aguilella, drummer for the band Daughter, and JP Carter of the nights opening act Dan Mangan & Blacksmith.
The band played beautifully, even when singer Davie forgot a few lines of the song “Magdalene” and looked to Joey for help, who merely looked right back, laughing. They played almost all of the old familiar songs off of Within/Without and Agape, as well as some crowd favorites from their new album Islands. As usual, the band came down into the middle of the crowd to play a couple of acoustic songs for those who might not have had a choice view for the beginning of the show. This is one of the many aspects of a Bear’s Den show that make this band special, and worth a trip to see whether they’re already a favorite or if you aren’t yet familiar with their music.