The Methadones / the Lawrence Arms

The Methadones / the Lawrence Arms: live in Chicagolive in Chicago (2005)
Thick Records

Reviewer Rating: 4

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

In Chicago, it's the end of an era, albeit a rather small one. At the end of the month the Bottom Lounge will be torn down in order to expand the Belmont CTA stop. Though the Bottom Lounge only held punk rock shows for a little over two years, it made its way into the collective heart of the city. A.

In Chicago, it's the end of an era, albeit a rather small one. At the end of the month the Bottom Lounge will be torn down in order to expand the Belmont CTA stop. Though the Bottom Lounge only held punk rock shows for a little over two years, it made its way into the collective heart of the city. A new Bottom Lounge will open in February in the West Loop, but I will definitely miss this place. Though there are more shows to be played, tonight seemed like the unofficial closing party.

First up were the Matics from the south side of Chicago. They're a tough band to describe, but imagine a cross between Hot Water Music and the more jammy elements of a live Fugazi show while never managing to lose any momentum. I highly recommend checking out their self-titled EP, which they prominently feature in their live shows. The Matics did a damn fine set but the crowd wasn't having them. Several people took it upon themselves to heckle and the rest of the crowd's reaction seemed a bit lax. The situation couldn't dampen the mood of the band, however; it was vocalist Jim Mertz's birthday and they were going to celebrate no matter what. Cheers!

Next up were Carbondale, Illinois's the Copyrights, finishing up a short tour with the Methadones on this night. If the crowd wanted to heckle them, they weren't going to get a chance. The Copyrights shot out one round of pop-punk after the next with the only break being four crashes of a cymbal. Their set whizzed by; before you could even get a comfortable spot, it seemed like, they were done, their twenty-five minutes gone. Just in case you didn't figure it out, they excel in pop-punk reminiscent of the early nineties Lookout! sound. Another band to watch.

The Lawrence Arms were the special guests of the night, booked as the Larry Armstrongs. I figured word would've gotten out with such an obvious clue, but the club was nowhere near sold out. I'm sorry, but I just can't get into this band no matter how much I'm supposed to love them. They're just not my thing. What I can tell you is that they started off with the song that's on Rock Against Bush: Volume whatever and played what seemed to be a bunch of new songs. Someone in the Punknews community (TenderBranson or OKSoda, I'm looking in your direction) has to have been there and been a Larry Arms fan so I encourage you to fill in the giant hole I left in the review.

The Methadones are somewhat of a Bottom Lounge house band. Six of the seven times I've seen them have been there. I can state this with absolutely no hyperbole: The Methadones are arguably the most fun live experience on earth. Living in Chicago, I'm lucky enough to get the opportunity to see them more than most, but this goes beyond simple numbers. I dare anyone to leave one of their shows without a smile on their face. To mark the occasion, they graduated to having intro music, Europe's genre-defining "The Final Countdown." Two horrendous minutes later, they launch into the one-two punch of "Say Goodbye to Your Generation" and "TV World." The breakdown of the set went as follows: Nothing from Ill At Ease, six songs from Career Objective, and five from Not Economically Viable. But oh no, the fun doesn't end there! It is a tradition for the band to give a mini-punk rock history lesson through the songs of Dan "Vapid" Schafer. The biggest reaction of the night came when the Sludgeworth classic "Someday" got a run-through. The chorus of "woooahs" easily overpowered the PA system. Not too long after, "Make Way" from the Riverdales was received with a similar reaction. They ended the set with a request of "Suddenly Cool," which just so happens to be my favorite song that I had never heard them play before. Hot damn!

As I go back and proofread what I've written, I can't help but feel that I've injected a bit too much of myself into this review. There's almost no objectivity at all. You know what though? This wasn't a night for objectivity. You could tell that no one was happy to have the Bottom Lounge close down, but we were going to have a damn good time sending it off. R.I.P. 3206 N. Wilton, you've done well.

Set list:

  • I'm About to Crack
  • Say Goodbye to Your Generation
  • Ammunition
  • Far Away
  • TV World
  • You Don't Know Me Anymore
  • Bored of Television
  • Mess We Made
  • Sorry to Keep You Waiting
  • Transistor Radio
  • Suddenly Cool
  • Someday (Sludgeworth)
  • Make Way (the Riverdales)


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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.
stevejonestherealbones (September 26, 2005)

score is for brian not taking my advice and either posting a full set of [2] reviews or posting the doomriders or 400 blows review. its like i'm typing to a brick wall over here

- jones the bones

- stevejones8770@yahoo.com

TheOneTrueBill (September 25, 2005)

Yeah, one at Logan Square one at Bottom Lounge? I was going to go to the Logan Square one but plans with my cousin fell through and couldn't organize anything else. And the Bottom Lounge one I thought was cancelled but in reality it wasn't. It was tough.

OKSoda (September 25, 2005)

You've never seen D4? Oh man, how? They played 2 shows in one week a year ago! That just boggles my mind. I personally elect myself for the duty of reminding you of D4 shows. It is my duty.

TheOneTrueBill (September 24, 2005)

And yet I've still never seen D4 :( Fuckin' jury duty and forgetfullness on my part

OKSoda (September 24, 2005)

I seriously want to try and go to the fest. The only problem is that I live in Chicago, and that makes it sort of difficult. If things work out and I can go, awesome. If not, its not a giant loss, since D4 plays Chicago a lot. And Minneapolis isn't too far away.

wehavecomeforyourchildren (September 24, 2005)

i never noticed that there was a user on here with the name OKSoda. i commend you, sir.

are you going to go see d4 at the fest?

darkstarm (September 23, 2005)

I saw the Methadones open up for Kelly & Co. this summer. They did not leave me with a smile on my face, probably cause they looked and sounded so fucking boring.

But, to each man his own.

Anonymous (September 23, 2005)

The old song that the Arms played was North Side, The L&L, any Number of Crappy Apartments. It was fantastic!
-TenderBranson (at work couldnt log in)

TheOneTrueBill (September 23, 2005)

Hahah, I love and hate the Fireside website at the same time. I love the fact that it's so funny and his such a shitty flash presentation of yuppies bowling but hate it because it shows what the place has really become.

guitarmy87 (September 23, 2005)

it sucks that the bottom lounge is closing.
ever since the fireside shut down to become a bowling alley again [which, by the way is hilarious, check their website] the bottom lounge has been my favorite place to see shows.

hopefully the new space well be good, or else ill have to find a new favorite venue in chicago.

niveK82 (September 23, 2005)

My score is for the bottom lounge. The best venue in this city since Off the Alley closed.

OKSoda (September 23, 2005)

Eh hem:

Yes, the Larry Armstrongs played mostly new songs. They opened with their contribution to Rock Against Bush Volume 2, and some where in the middle of the set played "On with the show." They also closed with an older song I can't remember.

As for the new songs, they sound amazing. It seems that Brendan and Chris are experimenting a little more vocally in the new songs, with each of them quickly spouting out a line before the other. All in all, the new songs sounded very promising.

AlmostPunkEnough (September 23, 2005)

the Methadones were great when i saw basically this show in early June. the Lawrence Arms were great too. excellent show.

i can't see how someone doesn't like the Larry Arms, but to each his own. and your love of the Methadones proves you have good taste.

Anonymous (September 23, 2005)

TLA rules, no further comment.

TheOneTrueBill (September 23, 2005)

Brian Peterson was posting on the Methadones board and said it'd be off the Lake/Ashland stop of the Green Line.

Anonymous (September 23, 2005)

Do they have their sight on a site yet? Washington/ Halsted area seems like a good area for a bar.

Anonymous (September 23, 2005)

i just dont see how its possible to not dig the lawrence arms. that is insane!

TheOneTrueBill (September 23, 2005)

Yeah, mine's way more meloncholy while still being celebratory at the same time.

inagreendase (September 23, 2005)

Posting this saves us from mentioning a news post with the Bottom Lounge moving. The context of this review is a good deal different from the first one.

Dante3000 (September 23, 2005)

Now there are differences in these reviews, but why the hell do we have two reviews of this? There's no good god damned reason...We get the idea, good show, blah blah blah. Less talk, more porn.

Anonymous (September 23, 2005)

Saw the Methadones the night before in Columbus with the Queers and the "Drunken Cholos". Fucking awesome. They never cease to rule. I'm from about five hours away from Chicago, and I'd bet I've seen them seven times or so, and only once without having to make a trip for it.
Wish Dan would have been playing these songs the whole time. Definitely the best stuff he's ever done (from a guy who loves Screeching Weasel, likes Sludgeworth, and thinks Beat Off is the best Queers album)

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