Bear Mountain Studio CMCT, Victoria BC, September 14

Bear Mountain Studio CMCT, Victoria BC, September 14
Photo: Kim Jay
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Rifflandia's last show on Saturday night wasn't advertised on the program. It was a surprise set by Vancouver's Bear Mountain at the tiny Studio CMCT. The photo studio-turned-venue opened its doors to the late-night revelers at two-thirty in the morning. At the front of the line, a beat boxing jam broke out. People were still ready to party, and Bear Mountain delivered.

The four-piece band was down one member but didn't let it show. Garage band fundamentals were layered with catchy synth, providing fans with the perfect fuel for dancing. Only a few songs into the set, the walls were sweating; shirts were off for guys and girls alike, while the temperature rose. Ian Bevis' sanguine voice added a charming honesty to their songs, and soared above the synth. A set highlight was when the band played "Two Step" off the self-released album XO. The crowd jumped in unison and by the end of the set, fans left more energetic than they arrived.