The Gaslight Anthem / The Menzingers - live in Salt Lake City (Cover Artwork)

The Gaslight Anthem / The Menzingers

live in Salt Lake City (2010)

live show

As far back as July 20th, I've been ecstatic about this show. Not only was it that some of my favorite bands of the past few years playing, but it was my birthday as well.

Against the black of the stage Fake Problems entered from the side amongst burning incense. The band quickly started in on material from the new record, Real Ghosts Caught on Tape, to a nearly empty room. Being a lucky bastard and possessing a promo copy, I was the only one in the room familiar with the new songs. Singer Chris Farren crooned his way through the eight-song-long set, consisting of only two older songs.

I certainly would have liked to have heard more but the RGCOT songs lean heavily with a Gaslight Anthem tone (Ted Hutt produced both RGCOT and American Slang), it proved best to mimic the sound of the headlining band.

Set list:

  1. ADT
  2. 5678
  3. RSVP
  4. Heartless
  5. Soulless
  6. Complaint Dept.
  7. Songs for Teenagers
  8. Heart BPM

The floor started to fill out just a bit when the anomaly on the tour (as I see them not particularly fitting in with the sound of the others), but absolutely heaven nonetheless, the Menzingers, took the stage next supporting their recent release, Chamberlain Waits; Chamberlain Waits was also the first record to be released this year that is being supported on this particular tour.

The Menzingers came out and did what they do best, getting the crowd into their chorus-singing, fast-paced, anthem-filled songs despite a lack of crowd interaction. Fortunately there were enough SLC punks in attendance this early in the evening that the band could feed off of their energy and regurgitate it back into their playing.

With the majority of the set list coming from CW, I was pleasantly surprised as the lights were turned down and a blue spotlight highlighted Greg Barnett as he alone played "My Friend Chris." Going into the third verse, I realized he had skipped the second verse (singing the third verse in its place) but that fell on deaf ears as I looked upon others who I noticed singing along to the other songs and not this one.

Set list:
  1. I Was Born
  2. They Speak of My Drinking, But Not of My Thirst
  3. Time Tables
  4. So It Goes
  5. Rivalries
  6. Tasker-Morris Station
  7. Lilith Avi
  8. My Friend Chris
  9. Who's Your Partner
  10. Deep Sleep
  11. Chamberlain Waits
  12. Sunday Morning
  13. A Lesson in the Abuse of Information Technology

Judging by the time it took me to reach my saved spot in front of the stage and the one concert attendee who almost wasn't going to let me pass compared to other beer runs between sets, the people of Salt Lake City were out to see the Gaslight Anthem, and they brought friends.

Gaslight came out to play American Slang leading with the "greaser" look they idolize. They opened with the title song and moved into "Boxer" before playing a fair number of Sink or Swim songs mixed throughout the night and touching base with a number of The '59 Sound tunes; Brian Fallon removed his guitar as a tech took over duties for two songs while Fallon danced around the stage and swooned all the ladies, and some men, in the house.

Glancing around, it was impossible to see somebody who did not come out in particular to see Gaslight. The venue had filled up, possibly selling out. Men and women shouted out Brian's name, hoping to attract his attention to them as the band blazed through a number of fan favorites.

Nearing the end of the regularly scheduled set, it felt like a mosh pit was breaking out. People were being moved around by a couple of gentlemen right behind me as they nearly started a fight for placement in the crowd, one man grabbing the neck of the other a number of times before Brian stopped mid-song to break up the two, commanding them to separate.

Soon after the set had concluded, the encore launched from what was a scheduled five songs according to the set list into many, many more (more than what is listed below). During one of the earlier breaks Brian had spoke with a wide smile about how surprised he was at the attendance of the show and how excited he was to see so many people excited to hear him and his loyal band from Jersey play he wished he had a camera available to capture the SLC crowd immortally, as well as brag back home about their warm reception in Utah.

As the last note was picked, Gaslight had played for two hours and 10 minutes (50 minutes more than scheduled).

Set list (not complete):
  • American Slang
  • Boxer
  • We Came to Dance
  • The Diamond Church Street Choir
  • The '59 Sound
  • Old White Lincoln
  • Even Cowgirls Get the Blues
  • The Spirit of Jazz
  • I'da Called You Woody, Joe
  • Angry Johnny and the Radio
  • Miles Davis & the Cool
  • Bring It On
  • The Queen of Lower Chelsea
  • Blue Jeans & White T-Shirts
  • Film Noir
  • Stay Lucky
  • Wooderson
  • Great Expectations
  • When We Were Young
  • Say I Won't (Recognize)
  • Boomboxes and Dictionaries
  • Here's Looking at You Kid
  • The Backseat
  • She Loves You
  • I Coul'da Been a Contender
  • Refugee
  • Drive