Chicago’s very own Into It. Over It. opened up at the Bottom Lounge Wednesday, October 26th, impressing the crowd with not only his lovely acoustics, but also his humorous stories. With honest lyrics centered on such themes as the one who got away and various US cities, Evan Thomas Weiss is certainly making a name for himself with what is considered his most successful project to date. Be sure to check out his latest release, his debut LP, Proper. Oh, and did I mention that he has a cat named Chicken-Hawk? What’s not to love about this guy?
As soon as Sean Bonnette and Ben Gallaty, the masterminds that are Andrew Jackson Jihad, took the stage, it became clear that we were all in for one hell of a time. With Bonnette sporting a very impressive Ted Nugent shirt and Gallaty performing with an absolutely gorgeous upright bass, these two meant business, and they got right down to business by opening with “Brave as a Noun” from 2007’s People Who Can Eat People Are the Luckiest People in the World.
The crowd was presented with a terrific set of fan favorites both old and new including “Olde(y) Tyme(y)” from 2009’s Can’t Maintain and “Fucc the Devil” off of newest release Knife Man. To help bring brutally honest “Love Will Fuck Us Apart” to its’ close, Weiss joined on stage to perform a lovely kazoo solo. Er, well.. as lovely as a kazoo can sound.
To break away from the humorous tone of the kazoo, Gallaty chose to play “Jesus Saves” off of 2008’s Only God Can Judge Me with a bow, giving the song a much fuller sound and the bass a longing, almost eerie tone - simply lovely. The pace quickly picked back up when 2007’s “Bad Bad Things” got the crowd moving. Everyone joined in to sing along, echoing loudly, “If I don’t go to hell when I die I might go to heaven, but probably not.”
It was all warm, fuzzy feelings and honesty at this show, folks. This performance was everything I had hoped it would be, and more. Watching those two play at such speed with such precision while still cracking jokes between songs and noticeably having a blast on stage left many in the crowd awe-struck – these guys make it look easy. With the entire audience tight in their grip the duo closed with “Little Prince.”
Headlining the evening was none other than Frank Turner! After opening with “Eulogy,” off of their latest album England Keep My Bones, the energy from the crowd was indescribable. The dedication these fans have is on a level of its’ own, every person in the crowd was singing at the top of their lungs and dancing as if this was their last chance. Other songs I could barely hear due to the fans lively singing along included new release “Glory Hallalujah” and 2008’s “Love Ire & Song.”
I must applaud the Bottom Lounge for booking such a great line-up. While all of the bands stand apart from one another, they also complement each other in a way, making for a perfect show. Be sure to check out the following 2011 releases from these extremely talented artists: Into It. Over It.’s debute LP Proper, Andrew Jackson Jihad’s new album Knife Man, and Frank Turner’s new album England Keep My Bones.