BOY & BEAR, WILDLIFE

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THE GATEWAY, APRIL 3, 2014

Thursday nights are such a tease. The gleaming pot of gold that is Friday is shadowed by the ominous morning that lies beyond the feverous night. Patrons of the Gateway, however, did not show fear of an early Friday morning (if one was to be held to them). The line for the doors trailed down the hallway to the train entrance – an impressive pull for a “school” night. An intense amount of enthusiasm billowed from the corridor, fans awaiting their beloved Canadian group, Wildlife, and Australia’s Boy & Bear.

There was a definite high school dynamic present: young girls swooning over every musician to step foot onstage, gasping at every smile given – whether to them or not. Young men were sloshing beer about, trying to pick up the chicks diggin’ on the band. Ahhh, the circle of life continues.

Wildlife were first to hit the stage, all members clad in black-collared shirts and black slacks. Don’t let the monotone outfits fool you, Wildlife triumphed throughout their set, lighting up the Gateway with their bodies bounding about the stage. The indie-rock Canucks surged enough energy through the bar to bring a large geriatric group back to life in the fast lane. Their set thickly consisted of songs off of their latest album, …On The Heart, released in early March of this year.

The scene quickened with up-and-comers Boy & Bear taking the stage. Front man Dave Hosking gave his studio voice a run for its money, performing with utmost grace, utilizing his hauntingly clear and entrancing voice to the fullest. Boy & Bear performed many songs off of their 2013 release, Harlequin Dream, including my personal favourites, “Three Headed Woman,” “Bridges” and “Harlequin Dream.” The boys from the land down under sure know how to rock a banjo and feel-good Western riffs ‘n’ rhythms.

The folk-rock outfit brought their best to Canada; I hope for everyone’s sake that they come back real soon.

Words and photos by Shayla Friesen

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