The Gaslight Anthem are currently on a North American tour in support of their 5th full length, Get Hurt and joining them on this run of dates across North America are Against Me & TwoPointEight. The line up for this tour is stacked to say the least and when presented with the opportunity to cover this show I didn’t hesitate to say yes. The Gaslight Anthem and Against Me are two bands that I have grown up for a large portion of my life having been a fan of both for 7 and 10 years respectively. So to see them together was a dream come true!
Unfortunately the night started off a bit rough and it was difficult not only obtaining credentials but even being allowed into the venue. Thankfully, Tito Belis is an amazing man and worked some magic to make sure everything got taken care even though it was nearly 11 PM on a Sunday. Due to all the mishaps and confusion my photographer and I missed TwoPointEight who came all the way from Sweden to play and was their second time coming to America, the first being 7 years ago opening up for Flogging Molly. I was able to hear them from outside the venue but that doesn’t really quite cut it. Perhaps next time everything will pan out and hopefully it won’t be another 7 years before they return to America.
In spite of all the hiccups we were able to make it inside a few minutes before Against Me was set to start and all was well again. The band has toured excessively this year in promotion of their most recent album, Transgender Dysphoria Blues, and for one reason or another I haven’t been able to attend any of the shows thus far. So to go almost a year without seeing them even though they have made their way towards Southern California several times had left me with Against Me withdrawals. So I was ecstatic to finally get my fix after about 10 months. Even when playing an opening set the band can still deliver a stellar show. They played hit after hit that night covering various eras of their entire discography in a 45 minute set that knocked the glasses off of my face(Seriously, I need to buy new glasses now). Very few bands can play such a tight set and the show Against Me put on that night only reinforced why I love the band as much as I do. They even managed to slip in a song I have yet to hear live, “How Low”, which is always a nice treat.
As Against Me exited stage left I roamed about waiting for Gaslight Anthem to set up. Lucky for me I was intoxicated enough that the 30 minute set change felt more like 10 and I didn’t become as restless as I normally do. Gaslight kicked off their set with “Stay Vicious”, the opening track to Get Hurt, and I have to say it sounds much better live than it does on the record. The Gaslight Anthem played a fairly Get Hurt heavy set that night but made sure to sneak in some classic songs throughout the set. The encore in particular stood out as it was comprised solely of songs from The ’59 Sound and earlier.
I will admit things did get a bit slow for my tastes around the middle of the set but still a solid selection of songs nonetheless. Although if they were going to play a group of slow songs they should have played “Break Your Heart” that night as it is easily the best album on the new record.Perhaps they were worried about making the entire room break out in tears as it is arguably the saddest song they’ve written. Complaints about the tempo of the set aside Gaslight Anthem knocked it out of the park that night and illustrated why they have become as successful as they have The last time I saw them play Palladium was in 2008 opening up for Rise Against, Thrice, and Alkaline Trio; now they’re headlining the same venue and playing to a packed house. I can only imagine what their next headlining tour will be like, until then enjoy this derpy picture of Brian Fallon everyone!
All pictures are courtesy of Sara Zitney.