Back in July, Minus the Bear announced they were ending their time together as a band. Instead of playing a handful of final shows near their hometown of Seattle, the band decided to do one more extensive tour across the country and then call it quits.
“There hasn’t been a single year [that] we haven’t done a fall tour,” keyboardist Alex Rose says from his home in West London during a short break from the road. “It just felt right to give people a chance to say goodbye.”
As they are in the middle of this tour, which concludes in mid-December with a sold-out, three-night stand in Seattle, the band has felt the love from newer fans and long-timers.
“It’s incredible,” Rose says. “It’s heavy and it’s joyful.”
To prepare for these shows, the band dived deep into their back catalog to sculpt the longest set list they’ve ever played as a band. But these shows will only be in North America. And it can be tough to deal with fan expectation where there is always a wish for at least one more show.
“We’re definitely not able to please everyone with this,” Rose says. “So we have to draw the line at some point.”
Minus the Bear was founded by vocalist/guitarist Jake Snider, guitarist Dave Knudson and bassist Cory Murchy, while Rose joined in 2006. Their final drummer, Joshua Sparks, joined in 2017. The band’s most popular albums, Menos El Oso and Planet of Ice, arrived early in their career. Their final album, VOIDS, came out in 2017, while their final EP, Fair Enough, came out earlier this year.
The band has played Dallas quite often, including numerous times at the Granada and House of Blues, and even the Wildflower Festival, which normally has classic rock bands and tribute acts.
“It seems to be a town that’s ready to have a good time,” Rose says of Dallas.
As for what the band members will do after these shows, Rose has his own Nightblind project, which started a few years ago and will continue after Minus the Bear is done.
“I’m not necessarily sure if it’s gonna be a full-time band, but I’m certainly gonna make music whether it’s a full-time thing or not,” Rose says.
As for why the band is ending, Rose cites multiple reasons.
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“I think collectively, we don’t necessarily want to throw any one of us under the bus,” he says. “The complexities of life and starting families and not necessarily living [in] the same place all played a factor. It just felt like this was a natural point to put an exclamation point on what — to us — is an amazing career.”
As the band wraps things up, they know they’ve made a huge impact on aspiring bands and musicians. Dallas’ own Caterpillars cites them as a major influence. Rose is happy Minus the Bear has made that kind of impact around the world.
“I felt awesome that a lot of our fans are musicians,” Rose says. “We have a lot of guitarists, drummers, bass players, and everything else in our fan base. The fact that people are starting bands or being heavily influenced by what we do is a really cool thing.”
Minus the Bear and Tera Melos play Friday, Nov. 30, at the Granada Theater. The show is sold out. A free DJ set from Alex Rose will follow at Sundown.