New Politics at The Webster Theater, 11.30.14
w/ SomeKindaWonderful & Bad Suns
Even though I went home to CT for Thanksgiving, I was still able to catch a concert, and for once, with people I actually know (my sister and brother-in-law)! After spending the summer on the Momentour with Fall Out Boy and Paramore, New Politics set out on the road yet again. Earlier this year, Pete Wentz announced the re-launch of his own label, DCD2 (formerly known as Decaydance), that's currently backing big names like Panic! At The Disco & Gym Class Heroes. New Politics is one of the label's most recent signees, and after releasing a new track called "Everywhere I Go (Kings & Queens)", the three guys took off on a fall headlining tour to promote it.
New Politics has been one of our favorite bands this year - we first saw them at Bottom Lounge early in the year, and then again in a very different atmosphere in Hartford (CT) at the Xfinity Center this summer. If you want to read up on the band, check out the write-up from February's show! Louis, David, and Soren really know how to put on an awesome concert and I highly recommend going to a smaller show while you can, because they are getting more and more popular each day.
Can I just say - I think I've been spoiled by all of these awesome Chicago venues, because the Webster Theater, while being an intimate space, was just not great. I hate to be mean, but it just feels dirty. It looks old and rundown, despite being restored in 1992, and unfortunately, in a not-so-great part of Hartford. I have actually been to a few shows at the Webster Underground (Jon McLaughlin & Jason Mraz), which is a smaller venue basically on the other side of the wall, but I don't remember that space being so bad. I suppose the venue works well enough for the rock/emo/metal crowd that it attracts, but it could also use a lot of fixing up, especially if it really wants to attract bigger names. Just a thought!
Anyway, all that being said, the beers were cheap (for once!) and the space itself is pretty large. The layout has the general floor, then a small step up to the "loge" area (which really just had some tables & stools), and then a final small step up to the bar area. It's definitely more of an underground venue for rock/punk bands. Oh, and another thing that was different for me, as compared to city venues, was that we couldn't leave the bar area with our drinks! Not sure if it was because the show was all-ages or not, but it left us confined to quickly drinking as many tallboy Miller High Lifes (the champagne of beers!) as we could before New Politics came on-stage.
First up was SomeKindaWonderful, a four-person band from Ohio [Jordy Towers (vocals), Matt Gibson (guitar), Ben Schigel (drums), Sarah Dyer (vocals, percussion)]. Again, apologies if this is harsh, but this band was just not my cup of tea. Granted, they sounded a lot like The Neighbourhood, who I do actually really like (saw them at the Aragon Ballroom in March, but didn't do a write-up, oops! Check out the photo gallery though). But they just sounded too much like The NBHD, to the point where it felt fake and basically like a copy-cat band. And lead vocalist, Jordy Towers looked like he stole from Jesse James Rutherford's wardrobe. IDK. Also, I found their set confusing - they started off with a indie rocker song, then played a rap cover, then more of a blues/jazz kind of song, and then came out with a ukulele. Not really sure what they were trying to accomplish with all of that genre-hopping, but I didn't come away with a very good impression of their music.
Next came Bad Suns, an indie-rock band from LA [Christo Bowman (vocals), Gavin Bennett (bass), Miles Morris (drums), Ray Libby (guitar)]. Again, didn't really get a strong vibe off of them. They pretty much sound like your typical indie-rockers. I didn't take a lot of notes on their setlist (aka I was drinking), but check them out on YouTube if you want to know what they sound like.
We were excited to see New Politics again in a more intimate setting (because their show at Bottom Lounge was pretty awesome and set the bar). Unfortunately, this Hartford show was one of the only ones that didn't sell out - Boston, Philly, NY, and even Buffalo beat us. I felt kind of bad for the guys, to end on a show that wasn't packed (maybe because it was a Sunday?) but they still played their best and I know that I enjoyed it at least! And I got some more quality time with Soren, who I love.
Their set-list was pretty similar to the Bottom Lounge show - "Tonight You're Perfect", "Berlin", "My Love", "Dignity", "Goodbye Copenhagen", etc. They played their Beastie Boys cover again, a pretty cool mashup-type song that sampled parts of "Turn Down For What", "Smells Like Teenage Spirit", and "Baby Got Back", and another old track called "We Are The Radio". Their latest song, "Everywhere I Go" is a rock-anthem track that's pretty catchy, and gives a shoutout to United Airlines and their adopted USA-home of Brooklyn (actually Louis is from Long Island). Even though the crowd was young, they were enthusiastic and we all sang along with David and Soren. Boyd even did his crowd-walking, but not before noting his concern that most people in his path were teenage girls (ha!). I think the girls managed pretty well.
This was another really great show, and I'm glad that we got to see them play again as the headlining band. Rumor has it that they're back to writing new stuff, so maybe 2015 will bring a new album to go along with their latest track. Go support the guys on tour, they are really talented and always put on a high-energy, fun show!
As always, visit the Media page to see more photos from the show. And again, if you made it this far and still want to read more about New Politics, visit the post from February >> http://www.freeyourmusicsoul.com/blog/2014/10/21/new-politics-at-bottom-lounge-020614
Think: 21 Pilots + All American Rejects + a little Beastie Boys
Tweet: @NewPolitics, @SorenPolitics, @Me_Is_Boyd, @LouisVecchio
Instagram: @newpoliticsrock , @me_is_boyd , @loupolitics , @sorenpolitics