Punknews.org

Less Than Jake / Off with Their Heads

Less Than Jake / Off with Their Heads: live in Stroudsburglive in Stroudsburg (2011)
live show

Reviewer Rating: 3.5


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

When I found out Ted Leo and the Holy Mess would be playing a show in my area the same night as Less Than Jake and Off with Their Heads, I originally opted for Ted Leo. I've only seen him twice, whereas I've caught Gainesville's finest ska/punk hybrid countless times over the past decade. Mr. Leo ha.


When I found out Ted Leo and the Holy Mess would be playing a show in my area the same night as Less Than Jake and Off with Their Heads, I originally opted for Ted Leo. I've only seen him twice, whereas I've caught Gainesville's finest ska/punk hybrid countless times over the past decade. Mr. Leo had to cancel, so a buddy of mine, who I've seen LTJ with before, reminded me about the Less Than Jake show.

When we walked into Stroudsburg's Sherman Theater at 7 P.M., we'd already missed opening band Patent Pending, and Off with Their Heads were already on stage. I immediately rushed past small girls wearing pastel T-shirts to scream back Ryan Young's lyrics over the over-modulated speakers. Not even the ska riff they played as an intro to "Die Today" could get the crowd moving. They'll never know what they missed out on, as closer "Clear the Air" packed an even larger punch than it did on In Desolation.

The Supervillians' style of reggae-infused ska seemed to excite the crowd, but I wasn't feeling them. My buddy said they played a bunch of songs about drinking, food and pot. I spent their set with Off with Their Heads, drinking Jack & Cokes, sharing Brendan Kelly stories and observing how young the crowd was. I stand by my decision.

Five years to the day after seeing them play a Hello Rockview-heavy set in Lancaster, Pa, we didn't know what to expect from Less Than Jake. Since that show, I've seen them play mainly Anthem and In with the Out Crowd sets, with "My Own Flag" or "Johnny Quest Thinks We're Sell Outs" thrown in for fans of their older material. The band walked on stage with the lights off, and we were instantly treated to the opening lines of "Shindo". The band followed with "Sugar in Your Gastank" and fan favorite "Look What Happened", silencing any doubts about the set.

The band brought up the young age of the crowd many times, bringing two 12-year-olds on stage to perform stage dives and serenading another kid with the Spongebob Squarepants theme song as a 10th birthday present. "All My Best Friends Are Metalheads" really got the crowd moving, regardless of the fact many of them weren't even in third grade when the song appeared on Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 4. Roger and Chris even dedicated "How's My Driving, Doug Hastings?" to anyone conceived in 1996.

When the crowd was given a choice between "Al's War", "Just Like Frank" and "Soundtrack of My Life", the Hello Rockview closer was the unanimous decision. Roger pointed out the song choices were like putting a Special Olympian up against Carl Lewis. Other popular Less Than Jake stage bits included pulling random people out of the audience to make out during "Last One Out of Liberty City", T-shirt tosses from Buddy and JR during "Overrated", and confetti during set closer "Plastic Cup Politics".

For the encore, Chris, JR and Buddy came out for a stripped-down version of "Rest of My Life". The guitar/backup vocal/trombone solo combination made the song sound completely different from the album version. They closed with two more songs off Anthem, thanked the crowd and invited everyone out to the bar next door. We took them up on their offer. Over a Yuengling, Chris told me he doesn't mind the young crowd at the recent shows, they like playing around with the set lists and, most importantly, they're still having fun. It showed that night, and I learned a valuable lesson: I should never doubt Less Than Jake again.

Set List:

  1. Shindo
  2. Sugar in Your Gas Tank
  3. Look What Happened
  4. Conviction Notice
  5. Scott Farcus Takes it on the Chin
  6. Automatic [complete with "Harry J Reynolds" audio intro]
  7. Last One Out of Liberty City
  8. Help Save the Youth of America from Exploding
  9. All My Best Friends Are Metalheads
  10. Al's War
  11. Spongebob Squarepants theme/McDonald's theme/Scooby-Doo Theme
  12. Does the Lion City Still Roar?
  13. Overrated
  14. How's My Driving, Doug Hastings?
  15. Great American Sharpshooter
  16. Gainesville Rock City
  17. Plastic Cup Politics Encore:
  18. Rest of My Life
  19. Science of Selling Yourself Short
  20. Ghosts of You and Me




 

 
People who liked this also liked:
Weezer - PinkertonStreet Dogs - Street DogsAgainst Me! - White CrossesThe Menzingers - Hold on Dodge [7 inch]Bomb the Music Industry! - ScramblesStreetlight Manifesto - Everything Goes NumbReel Big Fish - Turn The Radio OffFake Problems - Real Ghosts Caught on TapeThe Holy Mess - Benefit Sesh [7-inch]Off with Their Heads - In Desolation

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.
shned (January 31, 2011)

Going to go see them in Chicago I was more excited for OWTH but that setlist is making me really excited for LTJ.

dingbat (January 29, 2011)

Checking this tour in KY in a couple weeks with the Dopamines. I'm excited for myself.

uncle_leo (January 28, 2011)

Ahaha. Patent Pending.

Misanthropee (January 28, 2011)

I spent their set with Off with Their Heads, drinking Jack & Cokes, sharing Brendan Kelly stories and observing how young the crowd was.

Hey man, I think you might've dropped a couple things back there...

cuffer (January 28, 2011)

Supervillains are actually pretty awesome, but it seems like their sound is moving towards pop-reggae which is unfortunate. They also don't have a horn section now which really hurts them, I think. Their older stuff is good though and they usually play "Ex-Girlfriend" and "Snow White" live which are extremely fast songs.

bryne (January 28, 2011)

The Supervillains are terrible.

facetofacereunion08 (January 28, 2011)

It's HOWIE not HARRY

misterspike (January 28, 2011)

"... I learned a valuable lesson: I should never doubt Less Than Jake again."

LTJ always delivers live.

Thrusters (January 28, 2011)

I saw them play Hello Rockview straight through a week ago today.

I wish it was a week ago today again.

damnitsderek (January 28, 2011)

God damn it, Less Than Jake always has such fantastic set lists.

Exclusive Streams

Sponsored


The Fest 13

Newest Reviews

Punknews.org Team

Other Places to Go