The Hives / Sahara Hotnights / Reigning Sound

The Hives/Sahara Hotnights/Reigning Sound: live in Chicagolive in Chicago (2004)
Universal Music Group

Reviewer Rating: 4.5
User Rating:

Contributed by: JiveSideJiveSide
(others by this writer | submit your own)

On Monday, July 26 I had the pleasure of experiencing an intense aural ass-kicking on a beautiful Chicago summer night - but enough about the weather, I wasn't outside in the cool breeze. I was lucky enough to be sweating profusely along with a capacity crowd in the smoke-filled Metro watching The .

On Monday, July 26 I had the pleasure of experiencing an intense aural ass-kicking on a beautiful Chicago summer night - but enough about the weather, I wasn't outside in the cool breeze. I was lucky enough to be sweating profusely along with a capacity crowd in the smoke-filled Metro watching The Hives, a band that has been fortunate to make it onto radio and video play lists, but also a band that has been mislabeled and passed up by majority of America's rock audience, which is unfair and unfortunate, but a situation that has yet to phase the five Swedes who are in the beginning of a national tour in support of their fantastic third LP Tyrannosaurus Hives. With razor tight musicianship, rabid energy, a great catalogue of tunes, and some sharp suits, The Hives are the real deal, a fact that wasn't over anyone's head on Monday night. "Eye-contact, it's all about the eye-contact. I like to see the whites of your eyes before I kick your ass with rock and roll," exclaimed singer Howlin' Pelle Almqvist as he connected to several hundred strangers and, as promised, handed out asses branded with great rock and roll music.

Paired with fellow Swedes Sahara Hotnights, the female quartet most certainly won over the audience with a performance and repertoire that can only be explained as the little sister rock to big brother Hives. It's hard not to enjoy catchy tunes played by four attractive, sweaty chicks, an opinion that was shared by all in attendance many of which purchased copies of the upcoming Kiss and Tell at the merch table and pulled the promo posters off the walls. Reigning Sound out of Memphis played first on the bill before the Hotnights, but there isn't much to report other than they need a lot of rehearsal, personal practice time, a singer with a voice, and they should never ever ever ever butcher Sam Cooke on stage again. Ever. And then out came The Hives, and it was better than good, it was fantastic.

Plowing through the bulk of 2000's Veni Vidi Vicious as well as Tyrannosaurus Hives, with "A.K.A. I-D-I-O-T" from 1997's Barely Legal for half of the two-song encore, Pelle and company played every song with incredible precision, dissecting the rhythms and riffs at top speeds that never lagged nor rushed, staying right in the pocket and commanded the stage with a swagger that can only be held by true veterans. One of the stage highlights was stopping on a dime during "Diabolic Scheme" to pose motionless for a minute and then jumping right back to the song without a hitch. This is not something that happens without a lot of work, and the work is what separates The Hives from every one of their peers; full of showmanship and musicianship, these guys are the real deal. A red neon sign with the band's moniker hung behind the five as they shook and shimmied on stage, stepping on the guard rails and leaning down into the audience, playing as if it was a friend's basement party and they'd never sold a record. "Now that's punk rock," Pelle exclaims after "Missing Link", a statement that couldn't be truer. Within only an hour my neck and back were jelly, I was exhausted and I agreed with Pelle about punk rock; it's short, loud, and brutal. With fast tempos and furious playing, it's impossible to deny how good these guys are. When Pelle claims that the next song is your new favorite it's hard not believe him, and when guitarist Nicholaus Arson blows on his picking hand it's hard not to believe that it's on fire, and after seeing The Hives it's hard not to believe in their world and believe that it is one of the best possible.

To see is to believe and having seen with my own two eyes, The Hives certainly are without a doubt law, and you, the non-believer, is crime. Pick up their records and go see their concerts because this band has the legs to carry them a long ways.


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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
Anonymous (November 19, 2004)

You can't handle the Hives. You are not crime.

Anonymous (August 23, 2004)

Stop fighting you freaks. The Hives are kick a. Tell me about another band whose drummer is named Chris Dangerous or a bassist who is named Dr. Matt Destruction. The beauty of the Hives is, unlike one of the opinions stated that the label has fed us the Hives, etc., they don't get radio play because their music is a bit too harsh and yet, they are hugely popular. The Hives believe in themselves and truly want us to believe that they are my new favorite band. Saying things like "we are the Hives and you love us," is studly. Marketing genious. The outfits are to die for. Sahara Hotnights were awesome. Like a new Go-Go's with alittle more edge and beauty. Reigning Sound? How about reigning poop? Best band ever? Try the Smiths.

Anonymous (August 22, 2004)

Anyone who says good songs are a plus is a fucking idiot. Thats you buddy.

fakesmile (August 17, 2004)

"If this is what is considered "punk"

I'd rather be reading about pop music."


Anonymous (August 8, 2004)

The problem with you though is that THIS site is "punknews.org" That's supposed to mean something

Packaged...spoonfed music like the Hives isn't Punk
It's some shit that the industry sold you and it worked apparently. Good luck at the warped tour ...

If this is what is considered "punk"

I'd rather be reading about pop music.

JiveSide (August 5, 2004)

Not a bad article, but it is posted on something called "Pop Matters", uses the term "Garage Band", and wasted a lot of my time reading through the writer's personal experience with music. SO, don't care about one's experience, "Garage Band" is about as specific and useless as the term "Grunge" from ten years ago, and if pop matters then anything that is "pop" matters, and that is a obviously not true. To respond to comments about Reinging Sound; I reviewed a performance, not a record, and for this particular performance the vocals, which did not deliver any melody or "singing", were drowned out by clumsy guitar, lazy bass, and spastic pseudo-rockabilly drumming that was anywhere but on the beat, and not in a good way. If you've heard Sam Cooke (google him if you know nutin') you wouldn't be happy with some second-tier slop trio butchering his legacy either. There is a reason why this band played when everyone was still outside or at the bar. Notice I never said anything about their song writing. First off, not important in performance 'cause a band is either something interesting to see/hear or not (a good repetoire is a bonus, period), and when three musicians can't balance their own instruments so the room can actually translate words and hear the interplay of the instruments and their respective tones that band is either covering up mistakes and bad playing or they don't want the audience to be interested in the music past the performance. SO, if I made all y'all Reinging Sound fans cry then I apologize, but they got upstaged by Sahara Hotnights and last I checked they're an okay band but they looked like a great band after these guys...so what does that say about your Memphis princes? They need a lot of practice and an interesting singer who isn't afraid to let the room actually hear him sing over the music, which, if I'm not mistaken, is what I said in my review. That is all, thanks for reading, suck it up next time. Peace AouT.

Anonymous (August 5, 2004)

check this out

http://www.popmatters.com/music/concerts/h/hives-030721.sh tml

Here's an article that is all yours isn't

Anonymous (August 5, 2004)

what the fuck is your problem....
Greg Cartwright is a genius
It must be cool to like bands with outfits and made up names.
The Hives put Reigning Sound on the bill so a loser like you would be exposed to a real band.
I guess you missed it.

Go Download - Oblivians - Bad Man

Get it Together

Anonymous (August 4, 2004)

i like the hives and everything but realy they aren't in the same league as reigning sound. this score's for them.

Anonymous (August 4, 2004)

and maybe you're alright, and maybe i don't have a clue

Cos (August 4, 2004)

Lawerence Arms are pretty mediocre. But the last time I saw them play they mocked Dashboard Confessional, which always wins me heart.


Texahomo (August 3, 2004)

Just wanted to tell you what a sniveling rocknroll turd of an opinion you expressed regarding Reigning Sound.

That you are beyond stupid is apparent from your condescendingly shitty little dismissal of Reigning Sound lead guitarist/vocalist/writer Greg Cartwright's vocals.

I think he sounds just like Caruso.
But... Jesus- this band needs no defending.

I hope your mother becomes a crack-head.
God knows the shame she must have to endure from having shot you out of her twat.

Give up the erstwhile rock-crit pose and help to rehabilitate your mother, fool.
Have you no sense of propriety?


Anonymous (August 3, 2004)

"won't it be funny when generic overrated bands like the Hives will be playing your county fair in about 4 years?!"

Seriously, i'm not even a fan of the hives, but you will still sit here and post stupid comments in 4 years while the hives will be counting their millions (10 million dollar sign on bonus baby!).

Anonymous (August 2, 2004)

I saw this tour in Denver last week and I was feeling this review until it came to Reigning Sound... I agree with the person below who told this reviewer to listen to everything Greg Oblivian plays and let it blow the shit out of his ears... I went to this show at the last minute when I found out Reigning Sound was openning and only got to check out about four songs of their set, but they were bad-ass... Now, maybe they had an off night, or it just wasn't your thing, but there is no way anyone with an appreciation for all thing rock'n'roll could check out the band I saw and not dig it. Reigning Sound rocked... Plain and simple.

Anonymous (August 2, 2004)

"The Hives are better than your favorite band. Unless your favorite band is The Lawrence Arms. "

but the lawrence arms are shite compared to the hives

Anonymous (August 2, 2004)

The Hives always have been and always will be just another in a long line of tired derivative garage rock bands. Dressing up the same old music in a set of brand new black or white suits (depending on which album cover you look at / tour you see them on) doesn't make it innovative or special. The Hives have been doing this for years. There's a reason why nobody noticed until recently.

Anonymous (August 2, 2004)

i saw this tonight in s.f. and it was awesome. reigning sound were so so good. the first time in a long time after watching an opening band knowing i have to go out and find whatever i can from them.

Anonymous (August 2, 2004)

You are an Ass Clown. The new Reigning sound kicks the ass of anything the Hives have ever done(and truth be told, I've been a fan of the Hives since hearing about them in Gearhead Magazine, WAY back in the '90's.). Anyway, you need to go listen to everything Greg Oblivion has ever done, until it blasts the shit out of your ears.

~Petro B. Good

Anonymous (August 1, 2004)

won't it be funny when generic overrated bands like the Hives will be playing your county fair in about 4 years?!

SOYBOMB (July 31, 2004)

The Hives are better than your favorite band. Unless your favorite band is The Lawrence Arms.


Anonymous (July 31, 2004)

good review. i would like to see the Hives live.


ThreeChordsAndTheTruth (July 31, 2004)

Good review, wish I was there :(

fakesmile (July 31, 2004)

This score is for the Reigning Sound.
One of the best bands around.

theOneTrueBill (July 31, 2004)

I wanted to go to this so badly, but when I went to buy tickets they were already sold out.

And to make matters worse, my back up plan of Dillinger Four at the bottom Lounge was cancelled too! Nuts to that.

boldredletters (July 31, 2004)

does this guy work for the record company? sheesh.

TheNightProwler (July 30, 2004)

I was at this show and while the Hives put on a great show, I really didn't care for the crowd. I don't want to be mean or sound judgemental so I'll just leave it at that.

I thought it was funny though that the lead singer for the Hives mentioned that the last time they played the Metro that he accidentally hit that mowhawk security guy in the head last time from swinging the microphone too much.

Anonymous (July 30, 2004)

Their new record is a few notches below "veni..." ahh they are still good tho. Main Offender is a fucking monster of a rock song. I predict the second single from Tyranasaurus will be "little more for little you"


Anonymous (July 30, 2004)

i officially hate you.

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