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Grizzly Bear


FYF presents GRIZZLY BEAR! 11:15 Indoor Show

April 18, 2013

$25 General Admission / Non-Refundable tickets available by clicking the link below:

FYF Presents: A Special Night in the Desert with Grizzly Bear

Grizzly Bear

11:00 PM • Doors: 10:30 PM

Portion of the Proceeds will be donated to charity. Tickets are non-transferable.

Last year, IBM released a report about the way marketing officials at

major corporations are using the Internet. Though the gist of the study

concluded that these high-paid administrators weren’t using it very

well, the October release actually hinged on a much more intriguing and

intimidating fact: “Every day we create 2.5 quintillion bytes of data—so

much that 90 percent of the world’s data today has been created in the

last two years alone.”

We simply can’t keep up. Whether it’s the deluge of MP3s that flood

the Internet daily, the information that companies collect about the

purchases we make, or the photos of family pets and weekend meals our

friends load onto social networks, the worldwide swell of data is best

managed by supercomputers and servers, not the people who, in essence,

manufacture and depend upon it. It’s hard to resist the temptation of

this ever-accelerating cycle—to create and release quickly, so that the

world’s bytes don’t leave you behind.

But Shields,

the fourth and most fluid album by Grizzly Bear to date, slyly defies

that trend. True, the quartet of Chris Bear, Ed Droste, Daniel Rossen

and Chris Taylor have never made a quick follow-up; it took them three

years to get from Horn of Plenty to Yellow House, three more to get from Yellow House to Veckatimest.

Between those records, though, they’d not only toured but issued

singles and splits, EPs and remixes. After long spans of shows for Veckatimest,

however, Grizzly Bear went silent, or, to be more exact, its members

lived their own lives. Trips were taken, and friendships were restored;

families were visited, and solo projects were finished. The potential

energy gathered in tour vans and busses, in studios and on stages for

years was finally released, giving the individual band’s pieces the

chance to recover and, after a year, return to being Grizzly Bear.

The quartet first reconvened last summer in Marfa, Texas, with the

loose plan of rehearsing and demoing new material and seeing where

potential songs for the next album stood. Almost nothing stuck, but that

was fine. In Texas, they were reconnecting as friends and musicians,

and the material would surely come. Against the inclination of the

digital world, they took their time.

“Clearly everyone had been in a very different space,” says Rossen,

“so most of the Marfa time was seeing each other again, trying things

and feeling each other out. We all had to meet each other again.”

When they reconvened in January, again at the immortalized Yellow House in Cape Cod, they were anxious to return to Grizzly Bear. Indeed, Shields

depends upon the urgency of a band whose members have opted back in.

For the first time, they wrote more songs than they needed and

scrupulously edited the ideas. For the first time,

Rossen and Droste wrote songs together, taking each other’s ideas

and extending them and executing them with a new vitality. And for the

first time, they tended to move forward only with the songs that were

most open to true quartet collaboration. Asked which tunes on Shields

belong to which songwriter, every member balks and explains that, for

the first time, these are actually full-band numbers. Both in process

and product, this is Grizzly Bear as they’ve never been.

“Sun in Your Eyes,” the seven-minute close to Shields,

stemmed from a piano melody Droste wrote and discarded but that Rossen

picked up as a pet project and spent weeks building, changing and

rebuilding. The result is one of the most brilliant and audacious pieces

of Grizzly Bear’s oeuvre, dependent upon the same mix of drive and

drift that shapes the bulk of Shields. Though soft at the

edges, “Yet Again” pushes toward the status of rock anthem, with a

bridge that refracts dance beats through a musical kaleidoscope; the

slow creep of “What’s Wrong” commands an answer, its antiphonal vocals

and anxious strings giving voice to a frown and a sigh. Those open

emotions are an integral part of Shields, the most cohesively written

album of Grizzly Bear’s career. The words come matched by a sound that

is more passionate than proper, a quality earned by spending less time

on the perfect take than on the proper feeling.

“This has a different energy behind it,” concludes Droste. “Veckatimest

was a little more of a polite album; the desire to keep the vocals

smooth might have kept a little distance between us and the audience.

This one feels a bit more rough and exposed, so that on Shields, everything speaks for itself.”

Grayson Currin, 2012

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