Band line up: A Rocket to the Moon, Hit the Lights, the Maine, 3OH!3, Family Force 5
I arrive back at my favorite concert venue, The Beaumont. The same place I have seen some of my favorite bands. The All-American Rejects being the most recent. My jaw drops in astonishment. As I scan the line of people wrapping all the way from the doors to the tour busses; only to get longer. The five bands performing for the AP Tour this year I never would have thought to be so popular. Wrong, as usual. I aproached the line, people stopping to ask me if I had any extra tickets. “No, sorry.” I reply. (I later found out the tour in Kansas City sold out.) I bask under the warm Spring sun, wearing my purple zebra print skinny jeans. I tell ya, patience while in line for a concert can be hard work. Sometime around 6:20 I became fidgety, when doors were supposed to open at 6:00 pm. I turn around to see the line has now began to wrap into the parking garage. Thank gawd that’s not me. Is all I was thinking. A line of girls skipping yell exuburantly, one of them holds up a sign. It reads, “The Maine signing at 6:30”. Hell yeah! I thought, but instead I reply “Whooo!!” and lift my arms.
I stood next to a tour bus, and after I while I started to wonder. As I saw people who I guessed to be the crew walk in and out of that bus I was curious which band was in there. The door swung open and I saw Pat Kirch from the Maine hold the door open. Each member walks out and last, but definitely not least, John O’Callaghan steps out. Practically gasping I exclaim to my mother, “Dude, that’s John O from the Maine!” One of the guys behind me leans over and tells me, “You should ask to use their bathroom.” I smile in reply. (He and his friend are a whole other story. College boys; I tell ya!)
By the time the line actually starts to move it’s at least 6:30. Once I arrive in the building the place is thundering with loud music. Kids strutting around, people checking out merchandise, and others have already found their spot on the crowded floor. Antsy, I run over to the line for the Maine signing while my mom finds seats in the balcony. Bitting my nails, I watch the line, trying to mentally prepare myself for when I meet the band. As I begin to come some-what close to the signing table, two women walk towards the line. Counting bodies they turn to us and tell us they have to cut the line before the first band is on stage. The women cut the line a girl ahead of me. The girl explains to them how she’s with her friends so they end up letting her stay. “Awww!” I cry out. “The guys are good about staying after the show.” one of the ladies tell the line. Attempting to be hopeful, I slump back over to my mother.
The lights finally go out and the stage lights are turned on. I take a good look at the crowd and breath in hot air. Never have I seen such an energetic crowd. I feel like a part of me is missing not being able to be a part of that this time around. A Rocket to the Moon come on stage ready to rock. Reader, have I told you I adore red heads like Travis Clark and Nick Santino as well? No lie, it’s true. Though so far I’ve only deemed him and Travis Clark worthy. I was a bit iffy about A Rocket to the Moon when I sampled them on iTunes, but they really were great live. Good sound tinged with fun is such a great combination, don’t you think? A Rocket to the Moon’s sound was more fresh, less techno (well, only Nick’s old stuff sounds like that).
Yes, I have heard of Hit the Lights. Though they are another one of those bands who I think I’d like, but end up completely disagreeing with myself. There is something about his vocals that really annoys me. When I say whiny, I mean the person will savor one word to long and/or put too much force into singing. I think that was part of the problem. I guess I’m just a bit fastidious. While Hit the Lights were on stage I did not become a fan, though I did enjoy watching them perform. For me, if I am having fun that’s all that really matters. I watched the guys headbang and jump around the stage to some of their more pop sounding tunes, which I must admit was quite entertaining. Indeed I moved around a little myself, but I liked people-watching more. Kids had already begun to crowd surf and numerous boys were taking their shirts off. Some of ’em even swung their shirts high above heads in the air! This may sound slightly rude, but I was not at all dissappointed when Hit the Lights left the stage. I was eager for the Maine’s performance to start!
The intermission before the Maine were set to perform was longer. I could just feel that this is when the show would really begin. I’m getting a picture with John O! I kept repeating to myself over and over in my head. The Maine walked onto the stage and I went completely wild with girlish screams. John wore all black, making it hard for me to make him out with only the stage lights shining down on his soon to be sweating body. Each band said “f*ck” regularly, but I wasn’t going to take the time to complain. I became amused by John’s introductions before the Maine played each song. When the Maine played “Into Your Arms” John asked if the lights could be turned off to “set the mood”. Everything was pitch black aside from the flashing cameras being raised. “This song’s about sex,” said John and boy, I cannot tell you how many screams he recieved in return. — John O did mention that the band promotes safe sex.– Each member of the Maine did fantastic at keeping me entertained. Prancing around in their skinny jeans; and I loved when someone would stand on the speakers! John was probably the best lead singer to get the crowd involved in the performance (ag, I’m overusing this word). He even had the crowd form a “circle of love”. “Hey, dude.” John repeated over and over until he got some guy’s attention. “From you, I wanna see the best dance moves of all time.” More howls from the crowd as well as mine. John said, “I wanna see boys and girls making out!” “I know some of ’em are kinda young…” one of the guitarists trailed off. “I know I wear girl jeans, but I would be making out with all these hot girls!” admitted John. Crowd surfing was going on through their set as well. A kid reached the stage and John spoke, “You’re kinda wild. I like you.” John O constantly splashed the crowd with his bottles of water. If only I had a good digital camera, that would have made for a brilliant photo.
My favorite song they performed was their cover of Akon’s “I Wanna Love You” from 2008’s Punk Goes Crunk. Of course I had to dance to this song, it was too irresistable! Though close runners up were “Girls Do What They Want” and “Into Your Arms”. To top off the Maine’s fabulous performance John said, “Hold on guys, I’m f*ckin’ comin’ out there.” He stood atop a speaker ready to jump into the crowd’s raised arms. People began clapping him on and finally, John jumped! It looked like the girls would swallow him whole and all I was thinking was, That must take a lot of trust!
3OH!3. Man, these boys are funny. And they were a lot less annoying without all the half naked girls in their music video. Offensive lyrics and a wild performance matched together creates a good crowd response. Opening their set with “Punk Bitch” the crowd goes nuts with shrill screams and crowd surfing. Judging by the crowd response, at least two thirds of the kids at that show were there for 3OH!3. As annoying as 3OH!3’s song “Starstrukk” can get I sang along. I knew the lyrics and if you don’t take it seriously then the song is fine. The view of the crowd from the balcony was amazing. Watching everyone push, shove, bounce, and crowd surf was interesting! 3OH!3’s “gang sign” was flashed several times throughout their performance. Sean and Nat had a good sense of awkward humor. “I never took ballet, yet I’m silky.” Sean said, moving around the stage. Flailing his arms in positions that were supposed to be karate moves. Walking towards a guitarist Sean lifting his leg as if he would kick him. “You see that,” he spoke into the microphone. “easy.” Sean repeated a couple times. “I could,” *pause* “kill you.” Sean said, calmly, lifting his leg once again to the guitar player. Nat was swishing his long dark hair around as he danced. As a crowd surfer just about reached the stage one of the guys asked, “Dude, where’s your shirt?” The boy said something I couldn’t hear and the next thing I heard was one of the guys asking, “Is this your shirt?” “No, this is a white shirt.” and Nat threw the T-shirt to him. Later, Sean was shaking his hips after finishing one of their songs. “AWKWARD!” He cries out into the mic. Turning around he continues, “You know what we do with awkward silences? We take them and make them more awkward.” After a good performance, I think I might just buy their album.
As soon as 3OH!3 finished their set at least half the crowd began to leave. “Nooo!” I said. “This isn’t fair to Family Force 5.” I felt bad knowing that Family Force 5 wouldn’t get the same crowd response. Though some people stayed a tad longer to buy 3OH!3 gear I watched them leave the venue as well.
Did I mention Tuesday, April 14, 2009 was a special day? Why? You ask. Let me inform you, Tuesday, Soul Glow Activatur (also known as Solomon Olds) turned thirty years old! Members from some of the previous bands (including 3OH!3) came out and sang to Soul Glow and the remains of the crowd followed their lead. Sean of 3OH!3 smashed Sol’s face right into his cake lit with 30 candles. “Aw, you suck!” Solomon said, wiping the frosting off of his face with a towel. “Now you’re gonna have to lick it off!” Soul Glow Activatur yelled. Sean walked over and licked icing right from Sol’s cheek, picked Solomon up and swung him around!
Family Force 5 mounted the stage, filling the room with good energy. Each member dressed in a red, longsleeved shirt and white skinny jeans. Soul Glow Activatur introduced each member, “This is Phatty. This handsome devil here is Chap Stique. Nadaddy, and this twig of a drummer is Crouton.” Family Force 5 are probably some of the best and most choreographed performers if we are talkin’ bands. With complete honestly, I can say, Family Force 5 DID NOT get nearly enough attention for their performance! The guitarists would stand on the gigantic speakers and Sol’s loud screams were deliciously deffening. The drummer, Crouton, would get up and do freaking hand stands… on the drums!!! How can you not enjoy that glorious maddness?!?! The now small, empty balcony’s only life left was me, headbanging and cheering at Family Force 5’s wicked dance moves. I absolutely loved “Supersonic” live and the reaction of each band members on stage. With their over-the-top enthusiasm really made Family Force 5’s performance worth while. During one of their songs, Sean of 3OH3 came out and started dancing around. There stood a board in the back, and when you touched a square section, it would light up. Sean skipped his way over there, punching the board in a pattern. To sum it up, Family Force 5’s performance was perfectly courageous and definitely a “force” to be reckoned with.
The show ended and I walked on over to the merchandise tables. I spotted Nick Santino signing EPs and taking pictures. He was just about the skinniest thing! With big red hair standing up, I almost didn’t recognize him. “Can I get a picture with you?” I asked hopeful, a smile spread wide across my face. “Sure.” Nick replied, sweeping (yes, actually sweeping) his arm over my shoulder. *sigh* I will cherish that photo forever and always, for I got a picture with Nick Santino! Glancing quickly around the room. Hurriedly (I had a test the next day, so I had to get home) I couldn’t find John O’Callaghan. Though at the Maine’s merch table was Garrett Nickelsen, the bass player of the Maine. He and his “uber cool self” allowed me to take a picture with him too. At the last second I licked my lips, long story short. I ruined the picture. Oh well, at least Garrett looked awfully cute!
This night shall be remembered.