Here was "day 2" of my unofficial hardcore weekend, this time at Club Europa in Brooklyn. The last time I was here I was pretty disappointed they'd raised the stage what looked like six inches, because it made the entire place feel a little less intimate. But for some reason, it looked lower at this show, the air conditioning was running well and the lights weren't too intruding. Nice.
As the day before, traffic was also horrific, as cars crawled along the LIE and just getting to the Williamsburg Bridge was a nightmare. Consequently, my friends and I missed the split set from Richmond's Naysayer and Long Island's Backtrack.
Agent came on and played a good mix of all their EPs. A lot of LI fans seem to have made their way out for the show, as the band had a pretty strong reaction for a rare NYC appearance. Agent actually sounded downright fantastic; they rarely sound this precise and just generally together. It seems people are still warming up to the new 7" songs, even though the band has been playing one or two of them for a year and a half. Naturally, "I'm Fucking Sick..." received the biggest response, with kids suddenly bum-rushing the stage and diving off it onto a small group of others ready to act as a landing pad.
Set list (7:16-7:34):
- Anywhere Is Better Than Here
- I Am Job
- I'm Fucking Sick of People and Not Saying Goodbye
- Processes Incur Subconscious
- Tough Lake, Mr. Muenster
- Be Careful They're Ruffled
Another LI fan fave was right up next. Their reception seemed a bit lukewarm, but their LI faithful was alert. The band broke up their songs into mostly single batches and offered a bit of commentary in between songs; Tommy C. wasn't quite the funnyman I've seen him be at other shows, but I don't think anyone was here for Sunday night comedy. The band played their signature gruff melodic hardcore well enough and threw in the Dag Nasty cover for good measure, meaning they played the entirety of their new 7", Blind Faith
. Everyone was stoked on the closer, too, the feel-good hardcore nostalgia of "On a Mission."
- Live Dammit Live
- new song
- Out of Business
- Blind Faith
- I've Heard (Dag Nasty cover)
- Wolverines (?)
- 250 32nd
- On a Mission
Have Heart just doesn't seem to miss a beat. I should be sick of this band by now, but every few times I see them they have a set that ranks up among their best. This was probably one of these sets. The set flowed super well and the midpoint was punctuated when Pat Flynn had an incredibly heartfelt and inspiring "if you love something, set it free"-type speech that preceded "On the Bird in the Cage," drawing from his own personal experiences; it made the song hit that much harder. Speaking of would-be burnout, I probably listened to "Bostons" more than any other song last year; it's another thing I'd think I'd finally wound down from, but it was pretty great here, too. I was pretty bummed this was the second straight time they didn't play "Watch Me Rise" (best HH song? Probably.), but I was still way pleased with the set. As Aaron Bedard would say during Bane's set, giving huge props to a band his own has clearly inspired, "If you don't understand how special that band is, you're missing out" [probably paraphrased a bit].
- Hard Bark on the Family Tree
- The Machinist
- The Same Son
- Life Is Hard Enough
- Watch Me Sink
- On the Bird in the Cage
- Something More Than Ink
- Pave Paradise
I'm not a huge
Bane fan, but they're always fun to watch. Kids (and grown-ass men) just go off and there's this really oddly epic vibe about everything, and the band's got subtle creative techniques and a few hooks that make the songs interesting enough, and fun, too. You probably know exactly how this set went down, with multiple stage dives, Bedard jogging in place a lot and their guitarists hopping around and constantly interacting with the crowd.
- Some Came Running
- Can We Start Again
- Ante Up
- Pot Committed
- What Holds Us Down
- What Keeps Us Here
- Ali vs. Frazier I
- My Therapy
- Count Me Out
- Swan Song
The show was running about a half-hour late by this point, and I was worried it would cut into CIS's set. Maybe it did, as their headlining slot topped out at 43 minutes (I've definitely seen them play an hour and change on more than one occasion). The set list also produced no huge surprises (maybe aside from reviving "Long Song Titles..."), but it was cool to hear a few jams from Explosives
. I definitely would've liked to hear a handful off Selective Wreckage
, though, and with the band tracking their new album this month, I'm kinda bummed that probably won't happen anytime soon.
I can't really complain about the set here, though. The band played fairly straightforward versions of Is Dead
stuff, meaning it came together a lot more coherent than the sloppiness and weird tones the songs had live in the past. They played the "hits" from Troubled Stateside
superbly and grouped together things sensibly ("Gravity/Grace" with "Small Skeletal"; old songs in one straight trio).
They also have a new member. Guitarist Gary Cioni's been moved to bass and the band has brought back one of their old guitarists. He held things down pretty well, and it was interesting to watch Gary showing him the ropes (again), helping him along on backup vocal parts for new songs or certain riffs.
Good times, as usual. But hopefully in June I can finally hear "Love" or "Four X's."
- Everything Changes / Nothing Is Truly Ever Lost
- Bicycles for Afghanistan
- XXXX (The First 1000 Years of Solitude)
- Abre Los Ojos
- I'm on the Guestlist, Motherfucker
- Third Atlantic
- ...But You Are Vast
- Play It Loud Fuckers
- Long Song Titles Aren't Cool Anymore Because the Rest of You Fuckers Are No Good at It
- Small Skeletal
- I, Stateside