Earlier this year, indie/math/prog/dance rockers Minus the Bear went on a 10th anniversary tour for Planet of Ice, and now it looks like they may be calling it a day after 17 years.
A full tour hasn't been announced yet, but dates have been popping up (including Millvale, PA and Toronto) billed as "Music the Bear: the Farewell Tour." Post-rockers Caspian are opening. The band hasn't commented yet, but stay tuned for more concrete details.
UPDATE: Minus the Bear have officially announced their farewell tour, and in addition to Caspian, there are dates with math rockers Tera Melos. The run with Caspian includes shows at Asbury Park's Stone Pony on October 26 and NYC's Irving Plaza on October 28. Tickets for those shows go on sale Friday (7/20) at 10 AM with presales starting beforehand. All dates are listed below.
"These final shows are a celebration for the community of fans who gave us so much through years of dedication. We’ll be digging deep in the MTB catalogue and we are honored for the opportunity to play our hearts out for you one last time," the band said in a statement. They also announced one last EP, Fair Enough, which comes out on October 9 via Suicide Squeeze. You can hear the title track below, via Stereogum, who also interviewed the band about their breakup. It's got that classic Minus the Bear sound, but it's also a little melancholic and weary-sounding as far as MTB songs are concerned. It's bittersweet.
The album artwork for the new EP was created by bassist Cory Murchy, who says, "The picture on our first EP—This Is What I Know About Being Gigantic—was a blurry photo of the band walking through the forest. The cover to Fair Enough is a nod to that almost 20 years on. The figures are much more defined, coming into their own colors, a little less unified but still working within each other’s orbit. The wonder of the woods has been replaced with a milled piece of working lumber as the canvas. I think it reflects the music in a lot of the same ways—distilled by time and purpose."
Here is more of their official statement:
After almost two decades of writing and touring the world together, we have decided to close this chapter of our lives as Minus the Bear.
What started as a silly inside joke inside the dingy confines of Seattle’s original Cha Cha Lounge back in 2001 quickly snowballed into years of adventures, creativity, and friendship. We could have never predicted the wild journey about to begin. We’ve accomplished so much over the past 17 years, and we are grateful for the experience.
Undoubtedly we owe all of these adventures to you, our fans. Without all of you, the memories of traveling the world, exploring different cultures, and witnessing the delight of your beautiful faces singing along wouldn’t have been possible. Your support weathered us through storms that easily could have scuttled the band. Throughout the years, it’s you who kept us going. We cannot thank you enough.
It'll be sad to see Minus the Bear ago, but at least they're going out with a bang. It's been a great 17 years that have resulted in a few classic albums and EPs. Stream four of those classics below:
Minus the Bear -- 2018 Farewell Tour Dates
09 - Nashville, TN @ 3rd & Lindsley *
10 - Carrboro, NC @ Cat’s Cradle *
11 - Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade *
12 - St. Louis, MO @ Ready Room
13 - Kansas City, MO @ The Truman *
14 - Omaha, NE @ The Waiting Room *
15 - Minneapolis, MN @ Varsity Theatre *
17 - Chicago, IL @ House of Blues *
18 - Columbus, OH @ Newport Music Hall *
19 - Cleveland, OH @ Agora Theatre *
20 - Detroit, MI @ St. Andrews Hall *
21 - Toronto, ON @ Phoenix Concert Theatre *
23 - Pittsburgh, PA @ Mr. Smalls Theatre *
24 - Silver Springs, MD @ The Fillmore *
25 - Boston, MA @ Paradise Rock Club *
26 - Asbury Park, NJ @ The Stone Pony *
27 - Philadelphia, PA @ Electric Factory *
28 - New York, NY @ Irving Plaza *
27 - Tampa, FL @ The Ritz Ybor ^
29 - New Orleans, LA @ House of Blues ^
30 - Dallas, TX @ Granada Theatre ^
01 - Austin, TX @ Emo’s ^
03 - Albuquerque, NM @ El Rey Theatre ^
04 - Denver, CO @ Ogden Theatre ^
05 - Salt Lake City, UT @ The Complex - Grand ^
07 - Tempe, AZ @ The Marquee ^
08 - Pomona, CA @ The Glass House ^
09 - Los Angeles, CA @ The Fonda Theatre ^
11 - San Francisco, CA @ Regency Ballroom ^
12 - Sacramento, CA @ Ace of Spades ^
13 - Portland, OR @ Hawthorne Theatre ^
14 - Seattle, WA @ The Showbox ^
* = w/ Caspian
^ = w/ Tera Melos