Tag Archives: Show

Concert Review: The Falcon / Worriers / The Lippies @ The Grog Shop – Cleveland, OH – 04/06/2016

[Passing the mic/keyboard/whatever over to my pal Jason Utes who covered the recent Falcon show that filled up the Grog Shop on Wednesday night.  Thanks Utes for the killer review!  It appears that I missed one hell of a show]

“I wanna die and I don’t care who knows.”

If you’re reading this, you are probably already a fan of The Falcon. Otherwise, if I told you I was going to see a band with such lyrical presentation, you would imagine something far different from what I experienced Wednesday night.

Ostensibly, The Falcon is a band that exists primarily for the sake of the band members to get together and have fun playing music, free from the expectations of their higher-profile projects which include The Lawrence Arms, Alkaline Trio, The Loved Ones, and the Smoking Popes, to name just a few.  Seriously, Neil could add probably a dozen more credits on his own, and this band is now one degree of separation from Blink-182 (more on that later).

So, if the band exists in the name of a good time, how is that going to translate to the stage when they are touring in support of the mostly bleak and harrowing (but excellent) Gather Up the Chaps?

The FalconGranted the album cover, which features a despondent leather daddy in the same vein as certain Minor Threat and Rancid album covers, achieves a humorous yet somber sexuality that Third Eye Blind only achieves on accident, this record is still a serious undertaking even with song titles such as “Hasselhoff Cheeseburger” and “You Dumb Dildos” boldly printed on the sleeve. (Enough about the album itself, you can check out the review of the album).  Rest assured, the answer is that the show was a great time for band and crowd alike.

The Lippies, from Grand Rapids, kicked things off for me (Note: I did not make it in time for Blacklister to kick things off). The band took the stage led by Tonia Broucek who addressed the crowd with a politeness that bordered on timid that simply didn’t last. Once the band kicked into their brand of 1990’s Lookout Records reminiscent punk rock, she became an authoritative force that demanded (and received) control of the entire Grog Shop.

At one point, she entered the crowd to lay on the ground in a mock temper tantrum and her sheer aggression parted the crowd like riot police.  Broucek easily had the most confident and effortless stage command of the entire night. The real pleasant surprise of the set came when the band receded for a haunting solo rendition of “It Boils” off of their eponymous full-length that left everyone rattled. Standout songs to check out: “302” and “It Boils” which you can find on their BandCamp page.

Next up were Worriers, touring in support of the incredible Imaginary Life. This band became one of the highlights of the night for me [as] every song sounded fundamentally different but clearly had the same fingerprints. For fans of thoughtful and melodic rock, hopefully they won’t mind that I mentally catalogued them in the company of The Weakerthans. This was definitely a more highbrow compliment to what the Falcon had in store next (again, hopefully taken as praise by both parties). Check out “Glutton for Distance” and “Plans” on their BandCamp page.

By the time the PA started blaring Bad Lip Reading’s “The Bushes of Love” (I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that Lovegun played just before), The Falcon took the stage. From the opening riff of “The Angry Cry of the Angry Pie” the show was the usual onslaught of humor and spastic punk rock.

The Falcon

Having only two full length albums and an EP, all of their material was represented, but decidedly centered around songs from Gather Up the Chaps.  “Skeleton Dance” prefaced by a sarcastic “this will be great, wait till you get a load of this” and “War of Colossus” being high points for me.

Between songs, the band took playful jabs at one another and Cleveland itself. There were at least three instances of pointing out that Cleveland is indefensible to a touring band’s gravity toward Cleveland Steamer jokes.  They quipped that the crowd “Cleveland steamed the wrinkles out of [the song] ‘Sailor’s Grave’.”

Brendan Kelly reveled in pointing out how much Dave Hause hates ska and that he is now sentenced to playing the Falcon’s own ska anthem “The Unicorn Odyssey” on a nightly basis.

Dan Andriano stood helpless as Kelly mused on Dan’s Alkaline Trio bandmate Matt Skiba’s undead persona as well as a few taunts such as, “you BLINK and you’re out of a job!”

Dave Hause is a welcome addition and it’s great to see him playing punk rock again (The Loved Ones will soon be in the midst of a 10th anniversary tour for Keep Your Heart that I’m selfishly hoping will lead to the band being more active. I also don’t mean this to discount Dave Hause’s fantastic solo efforts)

The intended purpose of the Falcon is still front and center, a group of friends having a great time and not taking things too seriously. Still, the Falcon’s set still had its heartfelt moments.  On the day of this show, Merle Haggard passed away and Kelly, who has a prominent “Mama Tried” tattoo, was audibly choked up when he memorialized his hero with a story of Merle and Johnny Cash’s first meeting.

Sadly, due to the nature of this being a “side project” for everyone involved, it may be a while until we hear from the Falcon again.  This was their first proper tour since 2007.  Still, as the show ended with the band leading a conga line around the Grog Shop to Paul Simon’s “You Can Call Me Al” (yes, really) everyone in the club could only hope that this would be the first annual Gathering of the Chaps in Cleveland.

Special thanks to Toby Jeg of Red Scare Industries for inviting us to cover the show, and thanks to Brian for letting me stink up the joint on his behalf.

Setlist:
The Angry Cry of the Angry Pie
Sergio’s Here
Blackout
War of Colossus
Hasselhoff Cheeseburger
Huffing the Proverbial Line Off the Proverbial Dong or The Blood and the Frog
Sailor’s Grave
You Dumb Dildos
The Skeleton Dance
Little Triggers
Dead Rose
Unicorn Odyssey
If Dave Did It
The Fighter, The Rube, The Asshole
Black Teeth
The La-Z Boy 500

[Man, Utes, this was a damn fine review.  I think I just should give you my login info to the site and call it a life.  Thanks for covering a solid evening of tunes!  – Brian]

The Facials To Play Their Last Show

It is always sad to see a band call it quits.

What’s sadder is when it is a band full of your friends who you have known for a long time.

Facials 1

Akron/Cleveland punk act The Facials recently announced that they are going to throw in the towel.  In a proper approach, they are going to play one more show before disbanding.

Note that the band is not breaking up because they hate each other but rather because they are soon to be a bit distant from one another.

I have seen the Facials countless times and have always enjoyed their live shows.  From playing the ever elegant Chuck’s Steakhouse in good ol’ Akron, to playing both stages at the Agora in Cleveland, I can honestly say they have played solid sets.

They have shared stages with Rancid, White Wives, Street Dogs, Whole Wheat Bread, Civit, Swingin’ Utters, and even The Menzingers just to name a few.

Hell, I remember the time the band did a NOFX set.  That was one hell of a night…

Facials

Bummed to see them split, but I understand totally.  I know they didn’t want it to end, and I  think Chad said it best on his Facebook post about the band coming to an end:

There has never been a show that lacked the energy we aimed to create, so hopefully everyone can make it out one last time to end it right!

I consider myself lucky to have befriended these guys.  I was introduced to them back when The Narcoleptics X5 were still playing drunk shows in the early 2000s.  I liked their Pennywise approach and tried to hit every show they played.  From there, I would see other live shows with them and party until I would fall down a flight of steps.

I remember when we would all hit up the Warped Tour and be the old men heckling all the kids.  Good times.

As the years passed, things started slowing down for them with their day gigs taking up their free time and most of the band getting married and whatnot.  I really am stoked to hear that they are going to play one last show.  This will be the prefect farewell to a bunch of good dudes what have been doing their thing for almost 13 years.

Come see the band play one last hurrah at Now That’s Class on Friday, March 21st with special guests Night Sweats, The Old One-Two, and a couple other acts to be announced.

The Ataris Announce So Long, Astoria Reunion Tour

The Ataris

The Ataris made a huge announcement yesterday.  They have decided to get the old band back together to play live So Long, Astoria.

Old man moment.  So Long Astoria was released 10 years ago.  And to think, I thought I was old then… yikes.

Spite me feeling sorry for myself, I am absolutely THRILLED to hear that The Ataris are getting the original lineup together to perform So Long, Astoria in its entirety. This will be a show not to be missed.

The Ataris - So Long, Astoria

For one tour only, Kristopher Roe, Mike Davenport, Chris Knapp and John Collura will hit the road and play So Long, Astoria.  Supporting acts include: Authority Zero, Drag The River, Versus The World and Gasoline Heart.  Tickets for the upcoming tour will go on sale to the public on December 20th.

And yes, there is a Cleveland show.  March 24th at the Agora.

I don’t remember the last time they played Cleveland.  No seriously, I do not remember a single thing.  Someone apparently snuck up on me that night and got me drunk.  I think his name was PBR.  Lucky for me, I have some good friends who put up with me for the night and made sure I make it home safely.

Additionally, rumor has it that there may be a re-press of So Long, Astoria  thanks to Kung-Fu Records

As if that was not enough, The Ataris also released on their BandCamp page 50 demos and unreleased tracks from So Long, Astoria for “pay what you want”.

Check it out:

The Ataris’ So Long, Astoria Reunion Tour Dates:
Feb 28 – Scottsdale, AZ – Pub Rock (w/Versus The World)
March 1 – Las Vegas, NV – Backstage Bar (w/Versus The World)
March 2 – Fresno, CA – Strummer’s (w/Versus The World)
March 3 – San Luis Obispo, CA – SLO Brewing Company (w/Versus The World)
March 5 – Los Angeles, CA – House of Blues (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Versus The World)
March 6 – Anaheim, CA – House of Blues (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Versus The World)
March 7 – San Diego, CA – House of Blues (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Versus The World)
March 8 – San Francisco, CA – Bottom of the Hill (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Versus The World)
March 11 – Portland, OR – Hawthorne Theatre (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Versus The World)
March 12 – Seattle, WA – The Showbox at the Market (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Versus The World)
March 13 – Boise, ID – Knitting Factory (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Versus The World)
March 14 – Salt Lake City, UT – In The Venue (Club Sound) (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Versus The World)
March 15 – Denver, CO – The Summit Music Hall (w/Drag The River, Versus The World)
March 16 – Kansas City, MO – Riot Room (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Versus The World)
March 18 – St. Louis, MO – Old Rock House (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Versus The World)
March 20 – Minneapolis, MN – Mill City Nights (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Gasoline Heart)
March 21 – Chicago, IL – House of Blues (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Gasoline Heart)
March 22 – Indianapolis, IN – The Vogue (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Gasoline Heart)
March 23 – Detroit, MI – The Shelter (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Gasoline Heart)
March 24 – Cleveland, OH – Agora Ballroom (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Gasoline Heart)
March 25 – Pittsburgh, PA – Altar Bar (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Gasoline Heart)
March 27 – Philadelphia, PA – Theatre of Living Arts (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Gasoline Heart)
March 28 – Silver Spring, MD – The Fillmore (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Gasoline Heart)
March 29 – Boston, MA – Brighton Music Hall (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Gasoline Heart)
March 30 – New York, NY – The Gramercy Theatre (w/Authority Zero, Drag The River, Gasoline Heart)

Jeff & Brian’s Birthday Show Is This Saturday @ Now That’s Class!!!

Dudes and dudettes…  It is with great honor that I inform you of the best show to ever happen on 02/02/13 at Now That’s Class in Cleveland, America:

Annabel (Cleveland) – Luther (Philly) – Ma Jolie (Philly) – Worship This! (Olympia) – Collapser (D.C.) – + Comedy by Matt Celeste

Doors at 8pm, show starts at 9pm.  $6 at the door.  Bring extra cash to spend on all the band’s merch, especially the out of town ones!!!  Ryan Ford, the guy who created this awesome flyer will be selling some prints of it as well.  It would be in your best interest to set one aside for me…  Seriously.

If you do not hit up this show, you are in fact missing out on an amazing night of top notch music and debauchery for those of you who engage in the alcohol induced drinks of fun or bath salts.

I am honored Mr. Jeff Russell of Signals Midwest has put my name on this flyer and is going to somehow try and Skype the show to me.  Sadly I can not be there on account that I am an idiot and moved across the country last June, plus I work that night…  Still, I really hope all my friends can make it out for this night full of some amazing bands that include some of my best buddies.  This is the show that you need to be at.  Tell everyone.

Fun Fun Fun Fest 2012 Lineup Announced!

Since 2006, Fun Fun Fun Fest has been nothing short of fun x 3.  Every year, the music/art/food festival seems to turn it up a notch, so much, that last year I actually decided enough is enough and headed to Austin, TX, to check it out.  The result, minus Danzig acting like a little bitch, was a killer weekend with friends fueled by amazing bands.  In other words, I had fun.  A ton of fun.

The festival was well organized, and all three days of music was well worth the $200 or so bucks I dropped on a wristband.  By the want of the fest last year, I told myself and my friends I wanted to return the following year.

This year, the good people at FFF Fest have outdone themselves.  Not only did they get RUN-DMC to reform, but they also had put together almost a dream lineup for this music lover.  Refused, De La Soul, Seaweed, The Promise Ring, Bob Mould, Lucero, Lagwagon, Braid, OFF!, Against Me!, F’d Up, Superchunk, Minus The Bear…I can keep going…P.I.L., Explosions In The Sky, X, Turbonegro…

Seriously, check out all who will be playing this year:

This does not even include the FFFEST Nites, the nightly free (with wristband) concerts around the city.

I am planning on returning to Auditorium Shores in November to take in this festival.  Since I have moved, I have not seen one live band due to a lack of venues, but this festival will make up for it.  Not to mention Austin is one of my favorite cities and I am now only a 6 hour drive away…

For more info, visit FUNFUNFUNFEST.COM