Boy & Bear are all grown up. And after overcoming some brutal challenges, they’re in their happy place.
With a fourth album Suck On Light due out Sept. 27 via Nettwerk, the alternative rock outfit have good reason to be in a celebratory mood.
It’s a fresh start for a band whose frontman Dave Hosking has overcome crippling health problems, which forced them to take a break from the road in 2017 and 2018. Now rested and recovered, Hosking has found new energy which he and his bandmates explore in their new works.
Billboard exclusively premieres the title track below. It’s a song about hope, Hosking explains. “The moment I personally started to feel like I was on the improve, the moment things started to look up,” he tells Billboard. “The choruses always felt like a celebration of life and I think that sentiment carries across the song as a whole.”
The Australian alternative rock outfit exploded out the gate with their debut album Moonfire, which collected five trophies at the 2011 ARIA Awards, the dominant performance on the night. Just a year earlier, they took out the 2010 Triple J “Unearthed” award. Boy & Bear was ready and set for the next level.
While the Sydney quintet was going up in the world, Hosking’s health was on the way down. Initially, the singer showed signs of exhaustion, and he was initially misdiagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome. Depression and anxiety followd. The symptoms didn’t abate. Hosking struggled while writing and writing and recording their 2015 set Limit of Love. And over time, his sight and hearing deteriorated.
After running a battery of tests in late-2015, experts identified a gut bacterial issue that had been poisoning his nervous system. Hosking underwent a Fecal Microbiota Transplant (FMT), and his recovery began.
Produced by the band and Collin Dupuis (Lana Del Rey, The Black Keys) in Nashville’s Southern Ground studios, Suck On Light was inspired by Hosking’s journey.
Boy And Bear will hit the road in support of the new album, with the North America leg of their Hold Your Nerve tour kicking off Sept. 12 in Philadelphia.