Dylan Chadwick vs. Comeback Kid
I've always had some apprehensions with these "package tours." The intent is certainly pure, as it brings different "types" of bands under one roof (ostensibly gathering different types of fans together, too), but sometimes the approach seems a little scattered to me, and do we really need to mix everything up? Toothpaste doesn't taste good with orange juice, dawg. Still, the turnout proved solid, and it was made all the more impressive by the fact that Explosions in the Sky were playing next door, so for every self-appointed mosh goober hoping to pop off a few stage dives at Club Sound, five iPhone clutching doofuses in leggings, fedoras and comically exaggerated frameless glasses trundled about at In The Venue.
Gunner's a local band that's played a little bit in the area. In the past, my only real attraction to them was that they had the chutzpah to cover a super mainstream Foo Fighters song (which they didn't do at this show). In fact, they've actually revamped the lineup a little bit, booting the old vocalist and soldiering on with a Hetfield-style rhythm-crooner (sans a cowboy pirate drawl). I've worn myself out saying it, but I ain't gonna stop (Jack Kelley, forever in our hearts)––discordant ‘90s hardcore with a bunch of melodi-mosh parts that serve to grate and drag on––they're just not for me. Damnation they are not, so it's hard for me to get stoked on it. That being said, they got a decent reaction on the first cut (even if it was dorky kung-fu mosh), but seeing the pit open up and then have no one dance in it for four subsequent songs was all sorts of awkward. They ripped through some songs from their split with Provo's Despite Despair and the guitarist sported a bright green Martyr AD, shirt so I back that.
Living with Lions hail from Vancouver and feature one of Comeback Kid's guitarists on vocals. It's a lot more melodic than I anticipated, and I wholly expected to see waves and waves of pogoing teeny-boppers swarming the stage, but unfortunately they didn't elicit much of a wild response. Still, it's a hard style to pull off live with multiple vocalists and such. At one point, the singer apologized for his band not being "moshy enough," but thanked us all for watching anyway. Funny. I back it cuz I know it's hard to play when kids aren't going off (I once had some anarchist folkster with an acoustic guitar give me a thumbs down when my band played a coffee shop because I kept talking about pro-wrestling between songs. No fun). They had shirts that spoofed Beavis and Butthead, which might be a little played out (Fire and Ice beat 'em to it), but still a gesture I can support, as it's the only cartoon that's really mattered.