I first heard Plan A Project a while back when I caught a song of theirs on one of the Positive Youth comps. I though Jim Crow was a decent song and the lyrics brought to mind Op Ivy. So being an Op Ivy crank, I ordered their album Spirit of a Soldier. I enjoyed the album because it felt sincere and honest to me. "Spirit" had great lyrics on unity and they didn't get carried away with any flash or polish, it was just a straight up good punk rock CD, no pop, ska or overproduction, just good punk rock. So when I saw a banner up at Will's I got excited that I would get to see a good rock band at a great venue.
So flash to last night when I'm working on my fourth beer at 5 o'clock trying to see if I can get the numbers matched up when this guy walks up next to me and orders the cheapest beer. So after we laughed at the fact that we both were drinking PBR and yes, are that cheep and desperate he told me he was in Plan A. Turns out that this is Dan and when he found out that I was a fan he sat down and shared a couple with me while we talked about this small tour they are on. It's basically just them shooting up and down the east for a couple weeks. Three weeks, three guys, a van and lots of small venues. I was apologizing to him that the crowd was so light that night and he told me that it's been like that everywhere. It's just been hard to get support lately. I figured it was just Orlando, where people will only turn in out in force if A: you are playing at the house of blues and are cute, or B: your playing at the social and have four albums out. It had been a rough tour so far because when they started out they had to get a couple of hotel room because he had been sick and that screwed up their budget. He went on to say they were just happy to get twenty or more at a venue and he was happy tonight because even though the turnout was small, at least I was there and he also had some friends from their home (New Jersey) had turned out.
The first band to come on was Another Round, and they are a local band of straight up punk rock. They played a couple covers and some good rocking music. They where a fun band that wasn't afraid to work the room even though the room was not packed. The singer was energetic and ran out into the crowd to get them into it and make sure everyone realized they were working hard. Good stuff and I'm looking forward to seeing them again.
Plan A took the stage and launched into a set the showcased a lot of their songs off "Spirit". With dueling vocals and fast paced songs the set flew by faster than I realized and this impressed me. When it feels short you know it was good. They did One Fist and ABC and did their kick ass cover of White Riot. Then Dan says to Dennis "Bombshell?" and with that they launched into a cover of the old Op Ivy tune that warmed my drunk heart. Then for the ending the argued over which song to do as the guys from their home town wanted to hear Revolution, which is a kick ass song that just happens to have lyrics that Dennis doesn't care for, but they did it anyway and the Jersey kids danced and sang along. They ended the set with 14 hours which is a great tune about basement shows and F.M. radio ruining our tender ears. I danced and sang like a drunken fan should.
After the show I walked over to fork my money over to a hard working band and Dan loaded me up with goods. They have some great shirts and stickers and shit to help spread the word of Plan A. He then gave me a copy of their 3 song demo for their new album which is coming out on Go Kart in March. I gave this a listen and it looks like these guys have another kick ass album coming out, as these tracks are maybe the best work I've heard out of them yet. Locked Hearts and Hand Grenades is a song they did live and will be on their new disk that I especially enjoyed.
Plan A is what punk rock is all about. They're out there just trying to please enough people that they can make it to the next town. This is what it should be about. This is a band that will appreciate you and work for your alliance. So next time you see this band or another underground band coming to town go drop a few bucks on them. Spend the money you were saving for your next Finch sticker or New Found Glory shirt and watch a band that tries to be about something more. Plan A is a band that needs, wants, values, and works for your support. I suggest you check them out if you get the chance.