Dogstar has its day.
Keanu Reeves’ grunge-era band will mark their return to the stage on Saturday, May 27, with a performance at the 2023 BottleRock Napa Valley music festival.
When bassist Reeves, guitarist/vocalist Bret Domrose and drummer Rob Mailhouse take their positions in Northern California’s wine country, they’ll unleash “brand new songs,” organizers say.
BottleRock Napa Valley will provide Dogstar their first major performance in decades, and follows a low-key reunion last summer. “We are over the moon,” the band says of their booking.
During their brief but bright run, Dogstar captured a lot of media attention due to Reeves’ participation, beginning with the release of their four-track EP Quattro Formaggi in 1996 after several years of playing gigs in the U.S. and overseas; a full-length album, Our Little Visionary, was only released in Japan.
The group toured the world, nabbed a spot at Glastonbury Festival, opened for David Bowie, and warmed up for Bon Jovi on a lap of Australia. A date in Japan in 2002 would be their last, before the bandmembers went their separate ways.
Another album, 1999’s Happy Ending, would prove to be their swansong as all three moved on to other projects.
Dogstar began teasing a return last July with a throwback snap from their prime and the message, “We’re back.”
That began nearly a year of periodic updates about the in-process recordings sessions with producer Dave Trumfio, including video of Reeves transposing arrangements and a post from August describing a “deep, layered, lush” record on the horizon.
Back in 2019, Reeves spoke with GQ magazine about Dogstar and what he suspects is the general feeling about his side project. “I guess it would have helped if our band was better,” he said at the time.