Coachella’s 2015 lineup was just released and other than Florence and the Machine touring for the first time in ages, St. Vincent, and a few bottom ticket acts like Benjamin Booker and Ryn Weaver, I have to say I’m very underwhelmed. I find many of the lower ticket acts are actually the best, i.e. Lykki Li, MØ, etc. Yes, AC/DC is absolutely and undoubtedly incredible and everyone has been hoping for Drake for ages, but listing bands like Alabama Shakes as a second tier headliner and Jack White as the main headliner for Saturday night is a bit disappointing. Half of these acts just performed at other festivals like Newport Folk Fest, and therefore, the lineup is barely giving us anything new like the Outkast reunion of last year. Musicians like Hozier are wonderful and all, but should they really be considered ‘headliners’ at a renown festival like Coachella. I love many of the acts, but I just find the lineup a bit lackluster.
Second favorite Lorde song. Oh, Coachella.
If you were able to attend this year’s Coachella festival, you may have stumbled across the musical talent of Bear Hands (the band that is, not actual bear hands). The band, which consists of members Dylan Rau, Ted Feldman, Val Loper, and TJ Orscher, incorporate a variety of musical elements into their music, leading to new sounds heard in almost every song. Upon first listen, the captivating and catchy rhythms of the band’s music are not blatantly obvious. It isn’t until you find yourself singing their songs later in the day that you truly realize the underlying magic and beauty.
Their music is unique and intriguing. Songs such as “Bone Digger” manage to literally dig themselves into one’s head and remain there for the rest of the afternoon. With two EPs and full-length albums under their belt, Bear Hands have created an extensive list of euphonious sounds, falling into various musical genres, and thus appealing to a variety of audiences. Be sure to follow their music, as they have nowhere to go but up. With upcoming tour stops in Europe, I can expect the band will continue to gain notoriety around the world. Members from the band were able to answer a few questions; the answers certainly seem to capture the fun vibe the band exudes.
I’ve read Dylan and Ted attended college together. How do you feel working together for several years in this sense has influenced the way you work together now as a group?
Well, whenever there’s a disagreement in the band, Dylan and I take out our diplomas and wave them around to remind Val and TJ of our intellectual superiority. Then after they’ve been silenced, we usually have a round of one-on-one beer pong to decide who is actually right, because college.
How does it feel coming off of a successful Coachella performance? What was that experience like?
It had been a dream of ours for a long time to play that festival, but the fact that we had such a good crowd so early in the afternoon made it truly satisfying, validating. Really fun. I highly recommend it.
You are scheduled to play Reading and Leeds in Europe this August. Do you approach European tour stops differently than those in America?
No, we’re not making house remixes of all our songs or anything.
Distraction, your second full-length studio album came out this past February, on which Ted served as the producer. What was it like having these dual roles?
It didn’t feel like dual roles, more just a natural extension of the writing process. I have a continuing interest in tone, in balanced arrangements, and in keeping the train moving. I had to be present at all times, which was exhausting, but I prefer it that way.
Bear Hands produces a plethora of sounds including, punk, indie, dance and rock. Is there one particular sound that you think best describes the band?
Listen to “Bone Digger” here
Support Distraction here
Coachella.. coachella.. you da best. I adore the recorded version of this song and was wondering if they were going to perform it live.
They did! Hurraaayy!
Oh my goodness fangirling to the absolute extreme. This is perfect. Coachella it’s been real (a great time watching the live stream from my couch). Until next time.
Coachella 2014… If only I was there.