Alkaline Trio / Cursive

Alkaline Trio / Cursive: live in Denverlive in Denver (2010)
Epitaph Records

Reviewer Rating: 4

Contributed by: thepopeofchili-townthepopeofchili-town
(others by this writer | submit your own)

Alkaline Trio haven??t played a headlining show in Colorado in two years. The last time they were here was with the Offspring at the gigantic outdoor Red Rocks Amphitheater, and before that was supporting Rise Against for two nights at the 3,000+ capacity Fillmore Auditorium. So the chance to see them play for more than 45 minutes in a (relatively) small venue was certainly enticing. The fact that they had just released their best album in nearly a decade and were bringing along Nebraska indie rock heroes Cursive only sweetened the deal.

Opening the show on this snowy Thursday night were the Dear and Departed. Their sound would best be described as Jimmy Eat World-style emo rock with some U2-esque guitar work and gothic overtones. The crowd was entirely stationary for the duration of their performance, only politely clapping when they finished songs and cheering when they mentioned the headliner's names and thanked them for bringing them out on tour. The band themselves weren't that much more energetic. I wouldn't recommend checking these guys out unless it's with a great lineup such as this.

After a short set change, the lights dimmed and the real show started. As the intro from 2003's The Ugly Organ started to play, I became 10 times more excited. Sure enough, the band took the stage and launched straight into "Some Red Handed Sleight of Hand." The level of passion and conviction the band played with was inspiring. They kept the stage banter minimal and crammed a surprisingly large number of songs into their too-short set. The band hardly ever stopped playing the whole time they were on stage--all the songs segued into one another. The set list mostly consisted of tracks from their three most recent albums, but they did break out "Mothership, Mothership Do You Read Me?" from the Burst & Bloom EP and two songs from 2000's excellent Domestica. The crowd was noticeably mellow for most of their set, however, only really coming alive for "Driftwood: A Fairy Tale" and the closing one-two punch of "Art Is Hard" and "From the Hips."

Set list:

  1. Some Red Handed Sleight of Hand
  2. Dorothy at 40
  3. I Couldn't Love You
  4. Mothership, Mothership, Do You Read Me?
  5. A Red So Deep
  6. Driftwood: A Fairy Tale
  7. Mama, I'm Swollen
  8. The Martyr
  9. Big Bang
  10. Art Is Hard
  11. From the Hips

After a 30-minute set change, and a very high concentration of fog, the lights once again dimmed, a gigantic Heart & Skull banner dropped, some circus music began playing on the PA, and Alkaline Trio took their place on stage with vocalist/guitarist Matt Skiba decked out in war paint. The band kicked off the festivities with the title track from their latest offering, This Addiction, which had just been released two days prior. The audience had perhaps downloaded the album in advance, or were just very fast learners, because they sang along to every word of the new songs.

The group's past two albums each had a handful of great songs, but they were undeniably very different than everything that came before, and left some fans of the group's earlier, more punk-leaning material confused. The band smartly chose to stick to the classics, with some songs from the new album sprinkled in, and only one song each from Crimson and Agony & Irony ("Sadie" and "In Vein," respectively, although an early version of "Sadie" had been released on the band's split with One Man Army). One of the night's biggest surprises came at the start of the encore, where the band members switched instruments and performed a cover of the Misfits' classic "Attitude" with drummer Derek Grant on lead vocals and bass, bassist/vocalist Dan Andriano on guitar and Skiba on drums. The band were very tight and didn't miss a beat for the nearly 90 minutes they were on stage.

Both Cursive and Alk3 are at the top of their game in the live department, and this is definitely a tour worth checking out if it comes to your area, even with the mediocre openers. Don't miss out!

Set list:
  1. This Addiction
  2. Armageddon
  3. Emma
  4. Dine, Dine, My Darling
  5. We've Had Enough
  6. Mr. Chainsaw
  7. Dead on the Floor
  8. Fatally Yours
  9. Crawl
  10. Fuck You Aurora
  11. Goodbye Forever
  12. In Vein
  13. Continental
  14. 100 Stories
  15. Sadie
  16. Nose Over Tail
  17. 97
  18. Attitude (Misfits cover)
  19. Blue in the Face (full-band version)
  20. Radio


People who liked this also liked:
Elway - Hence My Optimism [7-inch]Godspeed You! Black Emperor - F-sharp, A-sharp, infinitySaves the Day - DaybreakThe Smiths - The Queen Is DeadThe Front - Snake Oil SalesmanNo Trigger - TycoonThe Hextalls - Rock You to SleepFat Mike - Rubber Bordello soundtrack (with Dustin Lanker)The Horrible Crowes - ElsieThe Copyrights - North Sentinel Island

Please login or register to post comments.What are the benefits of having a Punknews.org account?
  • Share your opinion by posting comments on the stories that interest you
  • Rate music and bands and help shape the weekly top ten
  • Let Punknews.org use your ratings to help you find bands and albums you might like
  • Customize features on the site to get the news the way you want.
Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
mill83 (March 8, 2010)

Haha, StaceyFitz called me a kid. Not according to the average age around me, but thanks.

hubitcherkokov (March 5, 2010)

Scott -

The sandwiched in "Lead Poisoning" in between "We've Had Enough" and "Mr. Chainsaw" and then the encore started with Matt on drums, Dan on guitar, and Derek on bass and they played "Fine" and "Attitude" before switching back to their respective instruments to play "Radio." But yes, otherwise EXACTLY the same.

maverick (March 5, 2010)

Oh, Cursive also played "The Casualty" and "Butcher The Song," neither of which are listed above, so maybe they're juggling their set more than I thought. They sounded great, but the crowd response was zero until "Art Is Hard" at the end of their set.


maverick (March 5, 2010)

Just caught this tour in Cleveland. The Trio's set was identical except for "Blue In The Face" being swapped out for "Fine" (also played with Dan on guitar, Derek on bass and Matt on drums).

Cursive's set was close to what's listed above although the order was juggled a bit and they didn't play "The Martyr" -- they played a different song off Domestica in its place, though (can't recall the name off the top of my head, but it's the one Ted sings lead on).


StaceyFitz (March 3, 2010)

I was very satisfied with the show, however, the lack of enthusiasm that the crowed showed for Cursive shocked me to shit. I??ll concede that the audience was largely adorned in sharpie X??s and that maybe I??m just expecting too much but Cursive nearly stole the show as far as I??m concerned. Alk3 was great, though. Their stage banter was pretty entertaining too. Some kids were requesting ??Weak Week? and Matt Skiba dismissed them with ??Huh, what??s that? Green Leaf? I don??t know what that is but I??d smoke that shit.? I don??t know, I had a sweet time.

that_band_changed_my_life (March 3, 2010)

i hate you so much matt skiba!

14theroad (March 3, 2010)

97?! Awesome. I hope they play that here.

LeightonESmith (March 2, 2010)

They played Continental. *drool*

quickattack (March 2, 2010)

Good review, very stoked to see theis in Cleveland in a few days.

10-4Eleanor (March 2, 2010)

I was there. And yes, it totally jammed.

teaessare (March 2, 2010)

wow i really hope i get that same exact set for both bands.

greg0rb (March 2, 2010)

Saw Cursive last night in Bloomington, IN in a 200-cap venue. They killed it. Similar set, but we also got "Sierra" and "The Radiator Hums"- just a couple I remember off hand. Tim Kasher was hilarious as well, at one point doing a Jim Gaffigan-esque 'crowd voice.' "Play an obscure Cursive song! Play one you recorded in your bedroom but never released!"

Scott336 (March 2, 2010)

That is the exact same set they played in SLC.

kylewagoner (March 2, 2010)

Damnnnn I wish I could see them this Friday to see that set list....Alkaline Trio, that is. '97 and Mr. Chainsaw are like...MAN! I HATE MYSELF!

mill83 (March 2, 2010)

Great show, great setlist. Weak Week will someday be played, Klyph, we must persevere.

surfingturf (March 2, 2010)

Love this set list. The songs that they picked off Good Mourning are icing on the cake.

inagreendase (March 2, 2010)

I'd like to see Calling All Skeletons rather than In Vein but that looks like a pretty bad ass setlist

So much this.

littlemissnoname (March 2, 2010)

I was at this show also. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it. Dear & Departed was definitely boring. They didn't really even seem to want to be playing in front of us. Cursive was amazing, but some douche was yelling "different band" behind my head the whole time. I was happy that Alk3 played mostly older stuff. I was really hoping Dan would break out an acoustic & play "Me and Denver" since they were in Denver.

misterspike (March 2, 2010)

Cool setlist from the Trio. Makes me more excited for their show here in So.Fla at the end of the month

ashtraymonument (March 2, 2010)

shit that's an awesome setlist from Alk3. i had to miss this show because my band played at a chinese restaurant/bar. weeeak

PowderDaze (March 2, 2010)

good setlists from both bands. actually wish i was at this show. i wonder if cursive still plays as drunk as they used to

klyph14 (March 2, 2010)

Our cries for Weak Week during the encore went unfulfilled.

Uncle_Leo (March 2, 2010)

The show at the Metro this past Sunday was very similar, but we got Stupid Kid which I was very surprised and excited to hear. I would to have heard Off the Map and Blue in the Face, but they did play Fine, San Francisco, and Paul by the Smoking Popes.

Sundowning10 (March 2, 2010)

thats so sick that they played 97 and Nose Over Tail, I'm either going to see them in PA or NC, they better play both of them. would love to hear Clavicle too

Salvador (March 2, 2010)

the fact that they're playing 97 on this tour is just awesome.
Dead On The Floor is an epic song off the new album

skankbook (March 2, 2010)

I would kill to see them play "Nose Over Tail" and "'97" in the same set.

happynolucky (March 2, 2010)

I'd like to see Calling All Skeletons rather than In Vein but that looks like a pretty bad ass setlist

PMAtill_imDOA (March 2, 2010)

Holy fuck. that trio set list sounds stupidly amazing.

badastrojon (March 2, 2010)

they played the exact same set list in pomona, hollywood, and seattle. Also, they always start their album-promoting tours by opening with their new single. Congratulations Alkaline Trio, you are the most predictable and conservative live band ever.

Exclusive Streams


Newest Reviews

Punknews.org Team

Managing Editor

Adam White

Contributing Editors

Kira Wisniewski Brittany Strummer Armando Olivas John Flynn Chris Moran John Gentile Mark Little

Copy Editor

Adam Eisenberg Britt Reiser

Podcast Producer

Greg Simpson


Aubin Paul

ISSN 1710-5366

© Copyright 1999-2013 Punknews.org

Terms of Use Privacy Policy Contact Us About Punknews.org

Other Places to Go