The London based duo Andrew Davie and Kevin Jones, better known as Bear’s Den have played most venue’s in Manchester over the last 2 to 3 years and they are back, playing the mighty Apollo.
Bear’s Den are greeted to the stage with a huge cheer. They open up the show with title track from their recent album “Red Earth & Pouring Rain” closely followed by ‘Emeralds’ both upbeat tracks to warm up the Manchester crowd. The duo are joined on stage by banjo player and brass section making up an impressive six-piece band.
“So good to be back here, thank you for coming out here tonight”
Follows is fan favourite ‘Elysium’ from their first album and takes the gig back to their folk roots, with the banjo and trumpet, it’s a real crowd pleaser.
Moving through their set they took us through a mix of tracks from the well know album ‘Islands’ interlacing some of their newer tracks ‘Berlin’ and ‘Her Tears’. Andrew wows the crowd with his perfect soft vocals and seamless harmonies with Kevin.
“Manchester we have some bad news, this is going to be our last song!” Andrew tells us just before ‘Pompeii. “I’m really sorry to say, this is definitely our last song” a grin spreading across the frontman’s face. “Unless there’s some crazy format where bands leave the stage and come back on” he continues to make fun of the encore tradition. “Above the clouds of Pompeii’ is greatly received with a mass sing along. The band leave the stage even though we know they will be back.
They return with ‘Sahara’ followed with acoustic version of ‘Bad Blood’ “So we would like to try a song with no mic, if you guys can keep it down?” The band completely strip it back to unplugged basics with no amps and no microphones. The Apollo is mesmerised and silent; you could hear a pin drop.
The 16 song set is closed out with ‘Islands’ opener and hit track ‘Agape’ which gathers the biggest cheer of the night and has the entire venue singing along.
“Thank you. It’s always a pleasure to play in Manchester“
You can catch Bear’s Den at most the UK’s summer festivals.
1. Red Earth & Pouring Rain
4. Greenwoods Bethlehem
6. Her Tears
7. The Love We Stole
9. New Jerusalem
10. Dew on the Vine
12. Auld Wives
13. Above the clouds of Pompeii
15. Bad Blood