Sick Of It All / the Suicide Machines / The Distillers

Sick Of It All/the Suicide Machines/The Distillers: live in Chicagolive in Chicago (2002)
Fat Wreck Chords

Reviewer Rating: 4

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

Last Friday I went to one of the most diverse punk shows i've been to in a long time. Every band that was on this bill has their own unique sound and stage presence. From the 77' style punk of the Distillers, to the ska/punk of the Suicide Machines, and the Metal/Hardcore of Sick of it All, none o.

Last Friday I went to one of the most diverse punk shows i've been to in a long time. Every band that was on this bill has their own unique sound and stage presence. From the 77' style punk of the Distillers, to the ska/punk of the Suicide Machines, and the Metal/Hardcore of Sick of it All, none of these bands sounded the same. Not only were the bands unique, but each band brought their own set of fans with them, which added to the diverse nature of the crowd. In attendance that night were people dressed in the classic punk, skater punk, rudie, skinhead, hardcore, and just some normal looking people. Yet, while their many different clothing styles and musical tastes going on, there was no conflict, everybody seemed to be reveling in the feeling of unity that was spread through out the crowd, and even commented on by members of the bands. Both the Suicide Machines and Sick of it All talked about the diverse line up and how no matter what, punk, hardcore, ska, and even emo were all from the same family, and that we are all messed up and dealing with it in our own way. I thought that these expressions of unity were really great to hear. With all the in scene bitching and whining, I'm glad some people realize that its still one scene and would rather concern themselves with the similarities rather than the minute differences.

First up was Shai Hulud, unfortunately I missed them but between the early start time (6:30), and rush hour traffic, I really didn't have a chance. I had to wait for my girlfriend to get off work, come home and change and then drive into the city, which takes around about 45 minutes to an hour without traffic, but of course we got stuck in line for the toll booth for about 30 minutes. Sorry I missed them, but some of us have to work, why can't they start shows later, at least a 7 or 8, it would make things a lot easier for people to get to shows.

Next was the Distillers, playing their no holds bar brand of punk rock. This is a band that I've been wanting to see for sometime. While I only got there for the second part of the set, I could tell they were ripping the place apart. Brody was attacking the guitar while the kids in the pit were going nuts, putting on a good sized pit for so early in the show. They played a good mix off both of their albums. All in all I wish I had seen the whole thing, lots of energy and a passion for playing, and the fuck you attitude that makes punk great.

The Suicide Machines came on stage next. When I first heard about this tour I thought this must be their attempt to rebuild their hardcore image from the self titled disk. While this may be the case, I still was really excited to see them. I have only seen Suicide Machines once before and that was at Warped 2000, so I was excited at seeing them in a smaller club. They came out in full energy and began pounding away with one great song after another, playing mostly from Destruction by Definition and Battle Hymns, with a couple from Steal This Record thrown in here and there, not surprisingly nothing from the self titled was played. The singer spent most of his time leaning into the crowd and standing on the barricade encouraging the crowd to sing along. During the set he made all the ska kids their come to the middle of the pit during one of the heavy ska songs from DFD and dance, and then suddenly launched into a more hardcore song from BH, which of course lead to a large pit. Suicide Machines played a great set that included most of my favorites, SOS, Break the Glass, Islands, Scars, and Hating Hate. The singer put a lot of energy into his vocals, by jumping around, getting the crowd involved, and screaming his heart out during the hardcore parts. The Suicide Machines are definetly a band to go see live, especially in a smaller club. The only problem I had with the set was I thought it was way too short.

Not many people could fall asleep to Sick of it All, but my girlfriend sure can, but I think that was due to the beers she had been pounded during Suicide Machines, rather than the lack of energy coming from the stage. Sick of it All actually put on a great show, the whole band was moving around and got everyone in the crowd hyped up and singing along. I had never really gotten into them before, I always thought they were too metalish for my tastes, but after seeing them live, I think I'm ready to give SOIA another listen. Their were definetly a lot of SOIA fans in attendance that night, as evident by the number of shirts and dragon tattoos that were present, and the singing and chanting along that came with every song. The singer had a great stage presence encouraging the singing along and only taking a couple of breaks from singing to introduce the songs or give some hilarious stage banter. At one point, after somebody up front showed him his dragon tattoo, he said that is one reason why they don't write poppy shit like Blink, that if they did hundreds of guys would have to go and get their tattoos covered up. He said, millions of dollars or guys with tattoos of our logos, well gee its not that hard of a choice. Plus he said they didn't know how to write those types of songs. After a few more songs he expressed his feelings about the tour and the sense of unity that he felt playing with all these different types of bands. He said that everyone on the tour and in the audience was fucked up in some way and that they were all dealing with it in a different but positive way. I thought that was great the expression of unity for the scene and not trashing a band from being different from what you play or like. He then wanted the crowd to feel the warmth and love that the bands were feeling, so he split the crowd down the middle and had each side run into each other and hug. It was great watching the chaos that followed. Sick of it All were a great way to finish up the evening, loud, fast, and a ton of fun to watch. I am definitely going to give these guys another listen and hope to see them sometime in the future.

This is really one of the more diverse tours that is out there right now, but don't let that scare you away. All of these bands are awesome live, giving the crowd tons of energy and keeping everyone entertained. The only problem I had with this show, besides the early start time was that the sets were so short. Especially Distillers and Suicide Machines felt like they had no time to play. Other than that it was a really good time.


People who liked this also liked:
The Misfits - Walk Among UsOperation Ivy - Operation IvyRancid - ... And Out Come The WolvesThe Misfits - Static AgeThe Frantic - Audio & MurderThe Gaslight Anthem - Señor and the QueenThe Distillers - Coral FangThe Distillers - Sing Sing Death HouseThe Gaslight Anthem - Sink or SwimAndrew Jackson Jihad - Only God Can Judge Me

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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 (March 21, 2002)

whoever says that was a bad review doesn't know what they were talking about. I was at that show and it was everything the review said. He should have been there for shai hulud, they were pretty good. The Distillers were the best band there though, i was in the middle of the pit and it was the funnest pit i've ever been in. I love the distillers

punky (March 21, 2002)

yeah i just wanna say that skinnyhead sucks too...

savesthedaypunk (March 20, 2002)

No one wants you around either skinny head.

SideLinedForLife (March 14, 2002)

Two post down: i agree that Shai Hulud has talent. In fact they have a lot of talent im just not a big fan of them but i do like Stretch Arm Strong for a hardcore band. That guys screams are freaking awesome.

evildeadalive (March 14, 2002)

I would die to go to this show. Well, maybe not die... but I would kill.

Anonymous (March 13, 2002)

hey im sorry about my comment but punk derived from 3 chord, i didnt mean all of it is, b/c i love punk a lot. But saying shai hauld takes no talant, they should look at the beginning of punk and see what the fuck they are talking about. And i still say it takes talent to scream, also the suicide machines new cd isnt very good, destruction and battle hymes were amazing. I would have loved this show, i like all the bands, but saying that shai halud is untalented at a punk show with bands like the distillers is wrong. also i love the disstillers so it all good.

SideLinedForLife (March 13, 2002)

To the anonymous guy below me i would just like to say to your ignorant ass that punk isnt always three chords. Go buy a Strung Out album and try to tell me thats not talent on the guitars. As for the band suicide machines they arent pure metal like shai hulud. Listen to their ST (which sucks) or try "Steal This Record" which is an exeptional album. -Rock

Anonymous (March 12, 2002)

what teh fuck are you people talking about, shai halud is amazing. And it wasnt just a punk show b/c soia were there. Maybe they wanted some diversity. Diverse shows are always the most fun b/c they dont get old. And it takes talant to scream cool, i can sing pop punk but i cant scream like shai halud. So maybe it does take talant. Hell a lot more then 3 chord punk, so why dont you go eat shit. B/c you obviously dont know that punk is increadably easy to play..... Idiot.

Anonymous (March 10, 2002)

I went to this show and it was a great show. it wasnt as good as Anti-Flag the week before, but it was great none-the-less. The author did a great review. I cant wait to see all of these bands again, except Shai Hulud(if i wanted metal, i wouldnt be at a punk show).

SideLinedForLife (March 9, 2002)

I didnt see the show and about the only band that i like is SM but anyway Im not the reviewer freind or anything i dont even know him but i must say that the review was good. Oh and i feel like getting ripped today so i will leave with this: I think that Blink has talent they just need to use it right.

moldy (March 6, 2002)

If SOIA did start playing blink type songs a bunch of people would get thier tattoos covered up.

CallingLondon (March 5, 2002)

gotta love things that are USUALLY ALWAYS true.

Anonymous (March 5, 2002)

I think the unifying thing is against more of the violence in punk/hardcore. People still get stabbed at shows, fights, etc. Regarding Blink. He always makes fun of some bands music, it's usually always more a joke(Though I doubt he actually listens to Blink) Last time they played NYC, he went on about Alien Ant Farm and Michael Jackson. Good stuff.

sickboi (March 4, 2002)

I think what Lou was trying to say is that he's down with unity for anyone true to themselves and each other. Being cool with everyone is one thing, but unity doesn't mean that you have to stick up for sell-outs.

CallingLondon (March 4, 2002)

i, for one, thought that was a good review. it sounds like it was a great show. i also noticed how you said the guy in Sick of it All first bashed blink's music, then talked about unity, tho i guess he can not like blink's music, but not hold anything against the actual band. and to the guy below me, show me some of your incredible reviews if you think this one is so terrible.

Anonymous (March 4, 2002)

you must be the worst reviewer of anything. sorry but its true

Anonymous (March 4, 2002)

So, they commented about how unity in the scene is important and how diversity among bands is a good thing, then they go and rag on Blink 182? How can my feeble mind hope to decipher such mixed messages?

kluchorama (March 4, 2002)

I saw Shai Hulud last night and they were awful. Anyone can scream into a microphone and the guitar parts were all two or three chord changes and that's it.

Anonymous (March 4, 2002)

SHAI HULUD was the best band at the Metro that night end of story

Anonymous (March 3, 2002)

so, i'm assuming the reason that bands didn't have much time to play was becuase the show had to end at a certain time. which is why they started so early. eh. if that makes sense.

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