Bear Vs. Shark

Bear Vs. Shark

Call it a furious reinvigoration. Bear Vs. Shark songs made fans feel alive in a way that this biography can’t even capture with words; the music itself, on recordings and from a stage, speaks for itself. Shouts for itself. It was balletic turbulence, anthemic tantrums, it was a sophisticated frenzy.

BVS is a handful of Michigan music makers who grabbed the ferocity of post-hardcore and the fragility of indie-pop and threw em’ both into a cement truck mixer with valiant nonchalance. But they broke many a heart when they broke up, admittedly quite abruptly, back in late 2005.

Forget it. That’s in the past. Now? With the oncoming reissue of their two tremendous albums via Equal Vision Records, the band gets to have a proper movie script ending… Not that we need to even underscore this (undeniably exciting) reunion event with any sort of melodrama, because this group was never about aggrandizing anything they did; that was part of their charm.

Formed in 2001 in Ann Arbor, BVS were achieving new heights of success and popularity when they abruptly decided to hang it up soon after the release of Terrorhawk in 2005. Guitarists/bassists John Gaviglio, Derek Kiesgen and Mike Muldoon, with singer Marc Paffi and drummer Brandon Moss have known each other as far back as third grade.

BVS’ 2003 debut, Right Now, You’re in the Best of Hands (Equal Vision Records), was an epiphany for many music fans eager for a revitalization of rock, back in that strange turn-of-the-century time when the distillation of genre and tribalism of sound-or-style was just too shrewd for one’s health. BVS broke those molds with a vociferous, fuzzed-out, polyrhythmic, anthem-howling squall of intensity that was free of hip indie postures, drained of any punk doom and gutted out any emo-gloom, edging instead, towards a more life-affirming, from-the-heart frenzy.

After a blur of tours and festival spots (not to mention substantial blog buzz), drummer Moss was cut for Ashley Horak, another lifelong friend from their social circle back in Michigan. Horak contributed to what would become BVS’ unintended final album, Terrorhawk. Worn down to the bone by tours and bullshit, the band opted to break up, mostly to save their sanity;

In the years since, fans continued carrying a torch for BVS’ signature multifaceted, multitudinous spazz-folk/blue-collar punk variations.

Last October though, social media fervor pushed the envelope. When three former members were on a stage together, a photo went live on Facebook with a caption that toyed it an as-yet-unconfirmed (and unconceived) reunion. Needless to say, it kinda blew up the FB walls (as well as some of their personal smartphones, as texts poured in…) Luckily, Equal Vision had long been eager to facilitate a proper vinyl reissue of both records and was all too ready to get the boys back in the Batmobile, so to speak. While Muldoon opted to sit this one out, bassist Nick Jones (who currently plays in Bars of Gold with Moss and Paffi) will be filling in, while a handful of limited live engagements will be announced very soon… Look for the dual-album reissue on September 9th, 2016, and stay tuned for more info.

All Dogs is a loud rock band that plays pop songs. With roots firmly planted in the DIY punk scene, All Dogs present their sincere and bittersweet songs in a unique, demanding and dynamic fashion. Since 2012, the Columbus, Ohio based quartet has been touring the United States, and have released a 7" and a split cassette tape. In 2015, they will be releasing their debut full length Kicking Every Day on Salinas Records.

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