Tag Archive for show

American Nightmare Live in NYC (1/2/14)

american nightmare

American Nightmare is quite frankly, my favorite hardcore band of all time.  I remember a friend giving me the album Background Music, and then seeing them tour with The Hope Conspiracy back in 2003.  I went mostly for Hope Conspiracy, but left an American Nightmare fan.  Soon afterwards they announced their breakup, and I was telling my friends for years all I wanted was another American Nightmare show.  My chance finally came at the end of 2011 where I got to see their reunion show up in Boston.  I thought it was going to be a one off thing, but then I got to see them again in NYC in 2012, and then again last night.

Although I was running on no sleep and was completely exhausted, I made the solo trek from Philadelphia to New York’s sold out Webster Hall.  I got done with work late so I missed all the openers, and actually walked into the venue right as American Nightmare was setting up. Good fucking timing.

For those who don’t know, lead singer Wes now fronts an 80s synth-pop band called Cold Cave and he looks much more like the part for that these days coming out with a shiny goth inspired jacket.  But as a frontman, he still has that hardcore kid in him as he runs around the stage, embracing the pile-ons and mic grabs.

Taking the stage and opening with Background Music opener “(We Are”) the place immediately erupted into a frenzy of stage dives, somersaults, and a huge pit that didn’t really let up for the rest of the night.  In true recent American Nightmare fashion, there wasn’t much stage banter and they kept it going. While their set seemed way too quick, they played a solid chunk off all of their albums.

Wes announced they were going to play some songs they never really do live, doing some of their slower songs (Bluem, Crime Scene, We Killed It, and instrumental Sometimes It’s Like It Will Never End) in the middle of their set which was different to see (and sort of strange to see in the middle of their set, especially when Wes left the stage during the instrumental), but it was cool to hear them do songs I never really saw them do before.

Granted there’s something that’s always been a bit strange to me about seeing them at Webster Hall, and I think it’s just the size/overproduction of the show with it’s constant colored strobe lights and I believe fog machines going.  This is more of a venue thing than an American Nightmare thing, but as one of the rawest hardcore bands around they’ve always seemed a bit out of place to me at Webster Hall.

While no American Nightmare show for me will ever compare to the energy of their first reunion show or the first time I’ve seen them, it’s always a good time to see one of my favorite bands of all time play again.  I know their shows are few and far between, but I’m really hoping they come to Philly soon.  How sick would it be to see them at the First Unitarian Church like they toured back in the day?  Shit would be unreal.

Setlist:
(We Are)
Protest Song #00
There’s A Black Hole In The Shadow Of The Pru
I’ve Shared Your Lips And Now They Sicken Me
Hearts
Crime Scene
Bluem (Calumet Street Light People)
Young Hearts Be Free Tonight
We Killed It
(And Sometimes It’s Like It Will Never End)
AM/PM
Shoplifting In A Ghost Town
I Saved Latin
Postmark My Compass
Calculation Nation
Please Die!
Farewell
Your Arsonist

Encore:
Love American

MP3:
American Nightmare – The Ice Age Is Coming!

And All The Pretty Pretty Kids With Their Tired Tired Eyes:
American Nightmare – Year One
American Nightmare – Background Music
Scenester 101: How To Be An Old School Hardcore Kid In 10 Easy Steps!

Bouncing Souls, None More Black, The Scandals Home For The Holidays Night 2 (12/27/14)

bouncingsouls-home

After the long ride to and from Asbury Park last Friday, I headed back the next day to catch night 2 of The Bouncing Souls annual Christmas Home For The Holidays tradition.  Usually because of the ride I only go one of the nights, but there was no way I was going to miss an incredibly rare None More Black set.  I got to the Stone Pony right as New Jersey’s The Scandals were setting up.

The Scandals:

scandals

I’ve been a fan of The Scandals for a few years now but only have seen them a handful of times.  Last I saw them was at Philadelphia’s Fire opening for Guttermouth in 2012 and barely anyone in the already small crowd knew who they were outside of me and like 3 other people.  They certainly must have been making a name for themselves as of late, because once they took the stage a pit immediately broke out and there was a decent amount of people singing along every word.

They played a bunch off their first LP The Sound Of Your Stereo (including personal favorite of mine off the album “Sirens”), and had people moving throughout.  A tight set, it was good to catch these Jersey punks again.

None More Black:

NoneMoreBlack

It’s rare for None More Black to play shows these days, I’ve said it the last time I’ve seen them, but I’ve seen Kid Dynamite more recently than I’ve seen None More Black.  While it seemed a lot didn’t know who they were, a small but dedicated amount of us were dancing, crowd surfing, and shouting along to the melodic punk rock.

Playing a mix of all 3 of their full lengths and their Loud About Loathing EP, the None More Black played an incredibly solid set without any stage banter or barely any pauses between songs.  I’m hoping these dudes play a headlining Philadelphia show sometime soon, we’ll lose our shit guys. Promise.

Setlist (From what I remember, not complete or in order)
Mr Artistic
Banned From Teen Arts
I’m Warning You With Peace And Love
Dinner’s For Suckers (I think they did this one)
Iron Mouth Act
Drop The Pop
Sinatra After Dark
Zing Pong
We Dance On The Ruins Of The Stupid Stage
Oh There’s Legwork

Bouncing Souls:

BouncingSouls5

Even though I just saw them last night, I was stoked to see my favorite band again as I’m sure they had something up their sleeves.  With the night before being songs from before 2000, this one was all post 2000, meaning a heavy emphasis on How I Spent My Summer Vacation and Anchors Aweigh.  Taking the stage and hitting that distinct feedback of one of my personal favorite songs “Apartment 5F”, the place erupted immediately and was a whirlwind of screaming along and dancing.

There was much more room to dance as opposed to the night before (not exactly sure why as both shows were sold out), and the home state heroes powered through a lively set with us enthusiastically returning the energy. They kept true to their word of only songs written post the year 2000 (with letting an exception of a Misfits cover of “Hybrid Moments” get thrown into the mix.

I say this every year, but The Bouncing Souls Home For The Holidays is seriously one of my favorite shows.  I’m really glad I went the second night, and having the majority of How I Spent Your Summer Vacation and a bunch off their split with Anti-Flag played made all the driving back and forth completely worth it.

Setlist:
Apartment 5F
That Song
Bryan’s Lament
Hybrid Moments (Misfits cover)
Private Radio
Never Say Die/When You’re Young
Manthem
The Something Special
Late Bloomer
Ghosts On The Boardwalk
Sing Along Forever
Coin Toss Girl
The Gold Song
Punks In Vegas
Broken Record
Lean On Sheena (Avoid One Thing cover)
Gone

Encore:
Ship In A Bottle
Anchors Aweigh
Kids And Heroes
True Believers

Mp3:
Bouncing Souls – Punks In Vegas
None More Black – Genuine Malaise and Misery
The Scandals – Sirens

More:
Home For The Holidays 8 Night 1
Home For The Holidays 7
Home For The Holidays 6
Home For The Holidays 5
Home For The Holidays 4
Home For The Holidays 2
Home For The Holidays 1

Bouncing Souls, Bane, Blanks 77 Home For The Holidays Night 1 (12/26/14)

bouncingsouls-home

Everyone has their holiday traditions, and for me it’s going to Asbury Park after Christmas and seeing my favorite band The Bouncing Souls play with a bunch of solid friends they bring along.  Ever since they started this tradition back in 2014, I’ve gone pretty much every year on one of the three or four nights (the two hour drive back and forth from Philly is a bit rough), but this year I decided to go two nights because the lineups were so stellar.

Blanks 77:
blanks77poster

I got there right as NJ pogo punks Blanks 77 were setting up, and I noticed that lead singer Mike Blanx appeared to be missing, and replacing him were two fill-ins.  I’d be a lot more upset if I didn’t just see them 2 weeks previously in Philadelphia, but I was curious about what happened.  After asking around, unfortunately Mike’s dog died that day, and he wasn’t able to make the show.  Sad and a bummer, but the band pressed on.

While it was a bit strange seeing Blanks 77 with two singers that weren’t Mike, they did a pretty good job of filling in, although no one can truly replace his snarl and snarky voice.  That didn’t stop us from singing along with plenty of people pogoing throughout their set.  While it was fun it was definitely a bit off, almost like seeing a Blanks 77 cover band, but given the circumstances they all did a pretty stellar job.

Highlights:
Up The System
We Are The Punks
Chelsea Girls
Pills
Void
Suburbia
Radio Hits
I Wanna Be A Punk

Bane:
bane

I was surprised to see hardcore legends Bane playing the Home For The Holidays, especially sandwiched between Blanks 77 and The Bouncing Souls, but as a huge Bane fan I was stoked.  I love their latest (and sadly final) album and with this being my third time seeing them this year, I’ve been a bit spoiled lately with Bane.  I wasn’t sure how the crowd was going to react with their being a barricade (something I’ve never seen at one of their shows) or with the majority of people there being Souls fans, but the second the Massachusetts hardcore band took the stage and broke out into “Speechless” the place erupted into a huge pit.

Aaron was constantly right up against the barrier with a constant influx of people crowdsurfing and piling on, trying not letting a stupid thing like a barricade stop any fun while a bunch of us in the pit were two-stepping throughout the set.  They played a solid chunk off most of their releases, with the new songs getting as big as a reaction as their older stuff (with closer “Can We Start Again” getting the biggest reaction).

Easily one of the best bands in hardcore, they threw a hell of a show, barricades be damned.

Setlist (Not in order, from what I remember)
Speechless
Calling Hours
Park St
Some Came Running
My Therapy
Final Backwards Glance
Count Me Out
Superhero
Can We Start Again

Bouncing Souls:
BouncingSouls5

Growing up an angsty teen in New Jersey, The Bouncing Souls were (and still are) my favorite band.  I’ve been going to their Home For The Holidays since they started it, and every year they usually announce a theme.  Past themes included having their friends write the setlist, playing a countdown of what fans voted their most popular songs, using a bingo machine, or playing the albums in full.

No theme was announced beforehand so I wasn’t sure what the Souls had up their sleeves, but the band took the stage to fan chants of Here We Go (which they opened with) and then Greg announced tonight it was going to be all songs prior to the year 2000.  Fuck yes.

With songs coming off of The Good, The Bad And The Argyle, Manical Laughter, Self Titled, Hopeless Romantic, and some earlier songs from the Green Ball Crew EP, the crowd was in a frenzy.  While there wasn’t really much room to dance the first night, that didn’t stop us from trying (to which what ultimately became just a big shove fest) while the Souls blasted through their classics.

Greg seemed more animated than usual running around the stage, jumping down to the barricade and into the crowd some with all smiles.  There’s always something special about the Souls Home For The Holiday shows that is really tough to explain without actually being there.  If you get a chance to go next year, definitely do it.

Setlist (not in order)
Here We Go
Lamar Vannoy
I Like Your Mom
Cracked
Kicked In The Head
Kate Is Great
Joe Lies When He Cries
Say Anything
No Rules
Holiday Cocktail Lounge
East Coast Fuck You
Some Kind Of Wonderful
Hopeless Romantic
Kid
Fight To Live
Lay Em Down Smack Em Yack Em
Toilet Song
The Freaks The Nerds And The Romantics
Moon Over Asbury
Quick Check Girl
Wish Me Well (You Can Go To Hell)
Night On Earth

MP3:
Bouncing Souls – Low Life
Bane – Non-Negotiable
Blanks 77 – Radio Hits

More:
Home For The Holidays 7
Home For The Holidays 6
Home For The Holidays 5
Home For The Holidays 4
Home For The Holidays 2
Home For The Holidays 1

The Holy Mess, White Wives Live In Philadelphia (12/21/14)

holy mess white wives flyer

Last night, I headed out to my current favorite spot for shows in Philadelphia, West Philly’s Golden Tea House to catch locals The Holy Mess.  I was running really late (I got in from NYC at 6am that morning after being out all night for a friend’s birthday, so I was moving in slow motion), but so was the show.  Not a bad turnout for a Sunday night, and the place was decently filled when I walked in during Timeshares last song.

White Wives:

white wives

I’ve never heard of these Pittsburgh indie punks before, but the band was on a 4 day tour and features members of Anti-Flag.  They had amp troubles before their set, but they kept the banter going while that was being taken care of before kicking into one of their experimental pop-punk anthems.  Featuring 3 guitarists, bassist, drummer, keyboards (who occasionally busted out the trumpet and tambourine),  and a huge pedal board, White Wives was really big on the ambiance of their music.

They played pop-punk similar to The Menzingers and Iron Chic, but added to it with their expansive sound.  This time of music is sort of a grower for me, but they definitely had some catchy songs and a pretty solid presence with by the end of their set they were smashing equipment and diving off their amps in the small kitchen.  Not really my style of music, but they made it entertaining.

The Holy Mess:

holy mess

The kitchen cleared out some when White Wives were done, I’m not sure if it’s because people were there solely for them or if it’s just because the show was running pretty late for a Sunday night Golden Tea House show, but no matter, there were still plenty who stuck around to see local Philly shit shows The Holy Mess.

I’ve been a fan and have seen them play basements, warehouses, and bars throughout Philly a bunch of times over the years, but this was the first time I was ever seeing them as a 3 piece band.  I didn’t realize that they’ve come out with a new album over the summer, so I didn’t know the majority of songs that were played, but the new songs sounded tight.

In typical Holy Mess fashion, they didn’t really have much of a setlist as much of a discussion after each song about what they should play amongst themselves, even doing a No Use For A Name cover on a whim much to the guitarist’s protest.  Playing what would be their last show of 2014, I didn’t hear anything before Cande Ru Las Degas, and not sure if it’s because they just didn’t feel like playing it or because it’s tough to do as a 3 piece.  Regardless, the band put on a solid set, and I’ll definitely have to check out the new stuff.

MP3:
The Holy Mess – Hospitals

Raise Your Glass:
The Holy Mess – Cande Ru Las Degas
The Holy Mess – Dismount
Holy Mess – Briefcase Full Of Bruise

Blanks 77 Live In Philadelphia (12/13/14)

blanks77flyer

This past Saturday on sort of a whimsical last minute decision, I headed out to Philadelphia dive bar Kung Fu Necktie to catch New Jersey pogo punk legends Blanks 77.  We were running late to this matinee (waking up in the evening will do that to you…), but got there right as Blanks 77 was soundchecking.  Seriously couldn’t have timed it better.

The small room was pretty empty as Blanks 77 was sound checking, and while a few more filtered in, it was at less than half capacity at all times (I think the show was poorly promoted, lot of my friends who are huge Blanks fans had no idea about it, and they usually get a huge turnout).  Mike Blanx finally took the stage, and the band opened straight into “Up The System” which had a bunch of kids pogoing and shouting along.

Blanks played a solid set to the small but dedicated crowd, with people constantly piling on and stage diving to sneer along.  Playing a mix of songs off of most of their albums with a strong emphasis on Tanked And Pogoed, the highlight may have been at the end when before they busted into “I Wanna Be A Punk”, they did a short rendition of The Waitresses “Christmas Wrapping”.

After finishing up, we didn’t really let them leave the stage… so they played two covers, “Pretty Vacant” by the Sex Pistols and “Sonic Reducer” by the Dead Boys, and called it a night.

Setlist (Not in order and what I remember):
Up The System
We Are The Punks
Party Train
Chelsea Girls
Search And Destroy
Automatic
Losing My BrainVoid
Suburbia
I Don’t Wanna Be
Crash And Burn
Radio Hits
Pills
I Wanna Be A Punk
Pretty Vacant (Sex Pistols)
Sonic Reducer (Dead Boys)

MP3:
Blanks 77 – Radio Hits

More Punk:
The Unseen – Lower Class Crucifixion
Mean Jeans – Are You Serious
The Lillingtons – Too Late Show

Blood Pressure, The Stasi, Low Charge, The Brood Live In Philly (12/11/14)

blood pressure flier

This past Thursday on a whim I headed out to my current favorite house in Philadelphia, The Golden Tea House to see a bunch of local hardcore bands and touring Blood Pressure from Pittsburgh.

The Brood:
brood

First up were Philadelphia locals The Brood.  I’ve never heard them before, but consisting of ex members of Witch Hunt, these guys (and girl) completely shred with their crusty aggressive hardcore.   Reminding me a bit of Behind Enemy Lines, I definitely need to check out some of their recorded work.

Low Charge:
low charge

Recently I’ve been listening to Low Charge’s 7 inch a lot lately, but I’ve never gotten a chance to catch the Philadelphia hardcore band.  Playing d-beat inspired hardcore, Low Charge completely tore it up with vocalist Will all over the place constantly dancing, jumping into, and charging into the receptive crowd.  Go see them if they play a show near you, they put on a hell of a set.

The Stasi:
the stasi

I’ve caught local The Stasi once before in the late spring play a show with The Flex and Violent Reaction, and it was a damn good time.  Coming off a few week long tour, The Stasi plays aggressive hardcore with song lyrics influenced by their namesake East Germany secret police.  Listening to both their demo and their 7 inch State Voyeurism, The Stasi played an energetic set with people dancing throughout.  Another one not to be missed.

Blood Pressure:

Last up were Pittsburgh’s Blood Pressure.  I never heard of them before the show, but I asked my friend who knows my musical taste pretty well if it was worth me sticking around for.  His response was “You’ll love them.  It’s ex-members of Government Warning man.”  I was sold.

Blood Pressure took the kitchen floor and played their face-shredding brand of hardcore.  With featuring the guitarist from Government Warning, it’s almost impossible to not compare Blood Pressure to them, and the songs were very reminiscent of his old band (this is definitely a good thing in my book).  Definitely a solid way to end the night.

MP3:
Blood Pressure – The Facts
The Stasi – On Standby For Guilt
Low Charge – Shut In
The Brood – No Way Out

More Hardcore:
Government Warning – No Moderation
Bad Side – Looking For A Bad Time
Aneurysm Rats

Lagwagon, Swingin Utters, This Legend Live in Philly (12/4/14)

This past Thursday, I headed to Philadelphia’s TLA in order to catch one hell of a lineup… Lagwagon and Swingin Utters.  I got to the venue on a chilly Thursday evening, and the place was pretty empty when I arrived.  I missed the first opener but got there in time for This Legend.

This Legend:

this legend

I’ve never heard of This Legend before the show, but apparently the LA pop-punk band consists of ex members from Yellowcard.  I’ve never really gotten into Yellowcard so I can’t really tell you the similarities/differences/etc but I can say that This Legend played a decent pop-punk set that had plenty in the crowd digging.  I enjoyed their set, but this type of music is a bit of a grower for me, so I’d have to check out their recorded work some.

Swingin Utters:

swingin utters

The place started to fill up a bit more as Swingin Utters took the stage, but still mostly empty.  I’ve had the chance of seeing Swingin Utters a few years back play the North Star Bar, and they completely killed it there so I was stoked to finally be seeing them again.  They took the stage, and while the TLA is a lot bigger than North Star (with barricades and the like), the band still put on a incredibly tight set.

It was clear that most of the crowd didn’t know who they were, but the few of us who did were shouting along to each of the songs as they blasted through both old and newer songs off their latest album Fistful of Hollow (which I have but haven’t really had a chance to listen through yet).

Always a good show, I think they would do better headlining their own show in a smaller venue, but I’m not going to pass an opportunity to see these long running punks.

Lagwagon:

lagwagon

I’ve been listening to Lagwagon ever since Let’s Talk About Feelings came out nearly 15 years ago, and listen to them pretty damn regularly but somehow never had a chance to see them (only a few bands fit this category… I’m looking at you Dillinger Four).  I bought tickets as soon as this show was announced in excitement to finally see them.

Lagwagon was touring to support their latest release Hang (which is their thrashiest release to date), and I’ve been playing the shit out of it (and need to have a post up soon about it) and so naturally the majority of songs came off it.  While some of us sang along to newer openers  “Obsolete Absolute” and “Made Of Broken Parts”, it was clear the majority of the smaller crowd haven’t listened to the new album yet, to which Joey Cape even commented “Philly you’re so mellow tonight, you’re scaring me a bit”.  It wasn’t until the band blasted into “Island of Shame” and then “Violins” did a real pit open up and people started screaming along every word.

Lagwagon played an incredibly tight and fun set, playing songs from all of their albums with the biggest reaction coming with their older stuff.  It was pretty rad to finally get a chance to see Lagwagon, they’ve always been a bit volatile about touring/going on hiatus so I’m hoping this won’t be the last.  The TLA was nowhere near capacity (maybe they were at half at most), so I’m thinking a smaller venue and this show would be off the fucking wall.

Setlist:
Obsolete Absolute
Made Of Broken Parts
Island Of Shame
Never Stops
After You My Friend
Falling Apart
Sick
Western Settlements
Heartbreaking Music
The Cog In The Machine
Coffee And CIgarettes
Wind In Your Sail
Burning Out In Style
Alien 8
Making Friends
One More Song
Razor Burn

Encore:
Burden Of Proof
Reign
Angry Days
May 16

MP3:
Lagwagon – One Thing To Live
Swingin’ Utters – Sign it Away

More:
Lagwagon – I Think My Older Brother Used To Listen To Lagwagon
Lagwagon – Double Plaidinum
Swingin’ Utters – A Juvenile Product of The Working Class

Mean Jeans, Groovie Ghoulies, Dark Thoughts Live In Philly (11/30/14)

meanjeanskepi

This was like a Ramones influenced pop-punk wet dream come true.  When I first saw that the Mean Jeans and Kepi Ghoulie were coming around to Philly’s Golden Tea House (the best spot in Philly right now for house shows), I was beyond stoked, but I just thought that Kepi Ghoulie was doing his solo acoustic stuff.  When I found out Kepi was doing a Groovie Ghoulies set with the Mean Jeans as the backing band, I knew I needed to be at this show no matter what.

My girlfriend and I arrived at The Golden Tea house a bit early, and got there as Dark Thoughts was setting up.

Dark Thoughts:

darkthoughts
First up were Philadelphia’s three piece Dark Thoughts.  Playing straight forward Ramones influenced punk rock, Dark Thoughts put on an entertaining show and definitely have me listening to their 4 song Demo.  They’re a newer band, so be on the lookout for upcoming recordings and any shows.  It’s definitely a fun set.

Kepi Ghoulie:
Kepi4

I love the Groovie Ghoulies, and have been listening to them ever since I saw them play live about a decade ago.  Besides being at it since 1983, The Groovie Ghoulies finally called it a day 7 years ago with an impressive discography and with Kepi Ghoulie going on to record some solo stuff.  Like I said in the intro, I originally assumed that Kepi was going to be playing those songs, but instead he announced he would be doing a Groovie Ghoulies set with the Mean Jeans playing…fuck yes.

Opening up with Devil Town, the kitchen space immediately erupted with some of us pogoing and singing along.  Kepi and crew didn’t let up as balloons were being thrown around, beer being spilled everywhere, and all around a giant party was happening.  Kepi was definitely feeding off the crowd’s energy, and keeping things in high spirits while taking cover requests on the spot (Moto’s Dance Dance Dance Dance Dance To The Radio) and cracking jokes about how old he is (“this is a song that Kepi wrote 75 years ago”).

They played an incredibly solid and fun set, and while I think this was a one-off tour, I really hope he comes back around playing Groovie Ghoulie songs soon.  Those songs are just too fantastic and fun to not be heard live… preferably in someone’s kitchen.

Setlist:
Devil Town
Bye Bye Brain
(She’s My) Vampire Girl
Ghoulies Are Go!
(She’s Got A) Brain ScramblingI Wanna Have Fun
Outbreak!
Doin’ Fine
Lonely Hearts Blues
She Gets All The Girls
School Is In
Carly Simon
Dance Dance Dance Dance Dance To The Radio (M.O.T.O cover)
A New England (Billy Bragg cover)
Beast With Five Hands

Mean Jeans:

meanjeans

After they finished up Kepi’s set, Portland’s Mean Jeans took a little break before coming back to do a set of their own.  They carried the momentum of the last set over, and opening with “Born On A Saturday Night” had the crowd immediately dancing in the small kitchen as neon pink streamers were being thrown all over the place (seriously, I left the place covered in sweat, beer, and streamers).

Teasing the crowd and asking if we wanted to hear a Cranberries cover or a Red Hot Chili Peppers one, they would play the opening riff to Zombie before blasting into their own song, and then doing the same with some RHCP songs.

Playing a set with plenty off of their 7 inches and their debut LP, they had Kepi come back to do a cover of The Ramones “Swallow My Pride”.  Afterwards Kepi requested “Pogo B4 You Go Go” to which he made sure to party with the crowd and pogo the entire time before the Mean Jeans called it a night.  Easily one of the most fun house shows I’ve been to in a while, and definitely one of the most fun shows I’ve been to this year.

Setlist (incomplete, not in order):
Born On A Saturday Night
Steve Don’t Party No More
Case Race
Slime Time
Stoned To The Bone
Outta Smokes
Swallow My Pride (Ramones Cover)
Le’ts Pogo B4 You Gogo

MP3:
Dark Thoughts – Identity Crisis
Groovie Ghoulies – Til Death Do Us Party
Mean Jeans – Rats Roaches And Jeans

More:
Mean Jeans – Are You Serious
The Lillingtons – Too Late Show
Teenage Bottlerocket – Another Way

Cock Sparrer, H2O Live In Philly (11/28/14)

cock sparrer

This past Friday, I headed out to Philadelphia’s Union Transfer to catch legendary UK oi punk band Cock Sparrer grace Philadelphia for the 2nd time ever in their long career.  The venue sold out relatively quickly once the show was announced, and with a pretty diverse punk lineup, there was a nice mix of spiky jackets, skins in polo, hardcore kids, and older punks who were listening to Cock Sparrer when they first came out back in the 70s.  I missed The Casualties but got there in time for H2O.

H2O:

h2o

I wasn’t sure the type of reaction H2O would get at a Cock Sparrer show, but the second they took the stage a pit opened up with hardcore kids two-stepping and shouting along.  Forming back in 1995, these guys have been a staple in NYHC, bringing a more melodic sound to a scene often dominated by bands such as Sick Of It All and Madball.

The band seemed in high spirits, saying how awesome it was to be playing to so many new people who’ve never heard them before, and they blast through their anthems for a relatively short set.  Since I wasn’t feeling very well I was trying to not go nuts, but i couldn’t help but jump in and two step during a few songs.  Always a good time, I’m hoping H2O comes around again soon to a smaller venue that they headline.

Setlist (From what I remember, not in order)
Still Here
Family Tree
1995
One Life One Chance
5 Year Plan
Guilty By Association
What Happened
Nothing To Prove

Cock Sparrer:

Cock_sparrer_live_in_london_crop

I caught Cock Sparrer about 2 years ago when they came around to Philly for the first time and the show was nothing short of unbelievable: so much energy from both the crowd and the band.  This time was no exception… Cock Sparrer took the stage after a lengthy musical intro, and immediately started playing the two note siren of Riot Squad which had everyone in the crowd moving and shouting along.

At one point, they took a second to say how Philly is the loudest and craziest crowd they’ve ever seen, and said “I know what you’re thinking, he says that at every show.  No, I’m being serious I even posted it on facebook before.” Usually I’d write this off as typical band working the crowd, but I’ve known people who flew to England to see them, and they said that it actually is much crazier here.  Maybe we’re all just really angry oi fans.

Cock Sparrer played an incredibly solid set taking songs from most of their releases, with a heavy focus on their most popular Shock Troops, but every song got a huge reaction from us. It’s rare for Cock Sparrer to play many shows in the States these days, only coming over for a select few.  I’m lucky enough that Philly is now one of their go to staples.

Setlist:
Riot Squad
Watch Your Back
Working
Again and Again
Teenage Heart / Droogs Don’t Run
What It’s Like To Be Old
Argy Bargy
Too Late
Price Too High To Pay
A.U
Running Riot
I Got Your Number
Because You’re Young
Take Em All
Where Are They Now

Encore:
England Belongs To Me
We’re Coming Back

MP3:
Cock Sparrer – Take Em All

More:
Cock Sparrer – Shock Troops
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Saves The Day, Say Anything Live In Philadelphia (11/26/14)

saves the day say anything

Earlier this year, my friend told me that there were rumors that Saves The Day would be touring playing their seminal album Through Being Cool in it’s entirety.  Growing up in New Jersey around the time this was released, I have played the shit out of TBC for 15 years now and it still is one of my favorite albums of all time.  So when the dates of the show were finally announced, I made sure to buy a ticket immediately.  They were playing two dates at Philly’s TLA, but on account I was seeing Cock Sparrer on Friday, I opted to only go to the Wed show.  A group of us met up at the show, and we got in a bit late missing Reggie And The Full Effect, but got there right as Saves The Day was setting up.

Saves The Day

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I was a little bit shocked that they weren’t headlining the show, but it didn’t matter much. After taking the stage, burning incense, and opening with a long wall of sound/trippy intro, the band finally broke out into opener All-Star Me, which immediately had most in the crowd singing along and a pit opening up (in which I was losing my shit in for a strong majority of the set).  They played a tight set and it was beyond awesome to finally see them play the songs I love that never get played live (Through Being Cool, Banned From The Back Porch).

When they finally ended Banned From The Back Porch, the band announced that they had a few extra songs, and played a mix from some of their later albums, kicking it off with their hit At Your Funeral which got the biggest reaction.  They played a bunch of newer songs I didn’t know, but they did play Jessie & My Whetstone and A Drag In D Flat (and Through Being Cool in it’s god damn entirety), so I can’t really complain.

Setlist:
All Star Me
You Vandal
Shoulder To The Wheel
Rocks Tonic Juice Magic
Holly Hox, Forget Me Nots
Third Engine
My Sweet Fracture
The Vast Spoils Of America
The Last Lie I Told
Do You Know What I Love The Most
Through Being Cool
Banned From The Back Porch
At Your Funeral
Drag In D Flat
Jessie And My Whetstone
Anywhere With You
Freakish
Undress  Me (I think)
Get Fucked Up
Ring Pop

Say Anything

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A decent amount of people left after Saves The Day (and they were the reason I was there as well), but my girlfriend, friends, and I stuck around for Say Anything who actually put on a pretty tight show.  Max Bemis and company took the stage to a roar of applause as they busted straight into Is A Real Boy opener Belt.  Even though the sold out TLA show was only at about 75% capacity (this is what happens when you’re this close to Jersey and Saves The Day doesn’t headline apparently), that didn’t stop the band from completely tearing through the entirety of Is A Real Boy as everyone sung along and danced throughout the set.

After finishing up the album (minus the final track) the band said they were going to play a few off of the reissue bonus disc of Was A Real Boy before coming out for a final encore of Admit It!  A solid show, even though I was never the biggest Say Anything fan, I definitely had a good time.

Setlist:
Belt
Woe
The Writhing South
Alive With The Glory Of Love
Yellow Cat (Slash) Red Cat
The Futile
Spidersong
An Orgy Of Critics
Every Man Has A Molly
Slowly Through The Vector
Chia-Like, I Shall Grow
I Want To Know Your Plans
Wow, I Can Get Sexual Too
Little Girls
Most Beautiful Plans
Metal Now
Admit It!

MP3:
Saves The Day – Banned From The Back Porch
Say Anything – An Orgy Of Critics

More:
Saves The Day – Can’t Slow Down
Saves The Day – Through Being Cool