Schuba’s Tavern played host to Rival’s Headline tour when they were in Chicago. With them came Hostage Calm and All Eyes West. You can check out our review after the break.
Most bands need to continuously pump out albums and tour in order to draw a crowd. Rival Schools decided to go the less is more route. The band took a break after their debut album, United By Fate. The break ended up being 10 years between albums. All of the members managed to keep busy with some playing in multiple bands, so this was an unanticiapted reunion when the band announced they were working on new material together. Headlining at Schuba’s in support of their most recent offering, Pedals, the crowd was anticipating a special night.
With members having done time in various New York City hardcore bands on the 80’s and 90’s, Rival Schools have been lumped in with the post-hardcore label. While the genre is definitely preset in their debut, with jagged guitar riffs all over the place, Pedals finds the corners sanded down a bit and is a much more melodic offering.
From the opening drum beat and guitar riff of Eyes Wide Open, the crowd was locked in to the band. Playing as a 3 piece, as opposed to their usual 4, the band really upped the energy of the crowd by starting with such an upbeat song. With lead singe Walter Schreifels having to play the lead guitar parts instead of rhythm parts, there was a minor hiccup with his pedals during the third song, and he lost sound. The bassist and drummer kept playing while Walter made up a couple verses about having to become a lead guitarist and internet problems. When the technical difficulties were resolved, the band picked up where they left off and finsihed the song to loud applause.
After shooting glances back and forth and making sure everything was ok with the sound board the band tore in to 69 Guns, one of the catchiest songs on the new album. The band did a great job alternating between old favorites and new songs though out the set. The crowd was jumping along to the frenetic High Acetate and then bobbing their heads to straight forward rocker Everything Has It’s Point.
Used For Glue, the oldest single in Rival Schools catalog, brought out the most energy in the band and the loudest cheers from the crowd. The band closed with How Soon Is Now by The Smiths, dedicating it to a long time fan for her birthday. While this is a song that has been covered more than any should, Rival Schools really managed to make it their own.
After a quick break, the band returned for a 2 song encore. World Invitational from United By Fate was the final orginal song of the night, and it was followed by the softly strummed (I Can’t Help) Falling In Love With You. The slower songs brought what was a loud and rocking night to a quiet close.
Openers Hostage Calm are an up and coming band taking their sound from old school punk and hardcore, making them a natural fit with Rival School. After encouraging the crowd to get closer to the stage, they proceeded to rock out with short 2 to 3 minute songs dealing with issues such as the loss of a friend and equal rights for everyone. With great musicianship and loud group vocals, they are definitely a band to keep an eye on in the future.
Local band All Eyes West got things started, and will be touring in support of their new self titled record.
Information about the review…
Tour: Rival Schools Headline Tour feat Hostage Calm
Bands: Rival Schools, Hostage Calm and All Eyes West
Date: October 21, 2011
Venue: Schuba’s Tavern in Chicago, IL