While I may prefer to be lying in a cool, colorfully lit room as I listen to Bear in Heaven, the landscape of seeing them at Lollapalooza will be forever etched in my mind. The sun high overhead as the Brooklyn trio took the stage. The dry earth blowing through the air as the speakers began to shake. The grin that never left Jon Philpot’s face. Mind you, Philpot is looking much less Burt Reynolds these days. Let’s stop there a minute. Seriously though, the end-to-end smile was leaping off his face and mirroring itself on everyone in the crowd. Any performance where the band members are more static will usually result in less connectivity from me and the rest of the crowd, but this smile alone acted as a conduit to draw us all into their tripped out synthpop dream.
Now I’m not saying this band was too static in their live set whatsoever. With instruments being switched around and hands motioning as if directing us how to groove there was no way anyone on even one foot wouldn’t be getting into it.
I hope to see Bear in Heaven continue to grow. I believe their most recent work,I Love You, It’s Cool, is the strongest and most diverse album they’ve created yet. If they can keep it up they’ll have budgets for Animal Collective sized sets and lighting displays. What a trip that will be….