With the beautiful weather last Tuesday, kids were crawling out of the woodwork for the Philly return of Pez-obsessed ska rockers Less Than Jake.
People crowded the entrance of the Theater of the Living Arts, anxious to enter the sold-out show. The line-up of Days Away, Hidden in Plan View, Allister and of course Less Than Jake would make any pop-punk junkie happy. And for only a mere $16 a head, it did not seem like a bad deal.
But for those of us who find supporting Clear Channel promoted concerts (or we just wait too long to buy a ticket) to be shameful, we must find other means of getting into such events. But by using your voice and being pushy, you can accomplish anything: I was able to get someone to sell me their ticket to the sold-out show for just $7.
I find that when it comes to shows where the average age of audience members is 15, there is nothing better than arriving fashionably late. I missed the first band, Days Away, but by the talk from the crowd I don’t think I missed anything at all. When Hidden in Plain View hit the stage, I was unsure whether I was at a rock concert or a funeral. The crowd showed no sign of life. Those that successfully made it thru HIPV’s set definitely deserved a trophy for surviving the awful piercing sound coming from singer Joe Reo’s vocals.
When Allister finally hit the stage, the only thought crossing my mind was: Could things get any worse? It may have been because the other bands were just so terrible, but Allister did get the place rocking. Showcasing some new songs as well as old favorites off their album, Last Stop Suburbia, kids seemed to enjoy the Chicago rockers. They even showed signs of life when a circle mosh pit broke out during the song “None of My Friends are Punks.” There is no question though that when their set did finally end, kids were more than energized for Less Than Jake.
Less Than Jake began the set playing hits off Losing Streak as well as their new album containing rare songs and B-sides. The most excitement came when they played “My Very Own Flag” off the Pezcore album. It was like a regular three-ring circus with kids flying all around, fists shooting in the air and impressive dancing.
Of course, what’s Less Than Jake without their comical onstage banter? Their performance is what made the show worth $7, but if I paid $16 I would have asked for a refund.
Rosalie Yurasits can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.