This past Thursday, I headed out to Philadelphia’s Union Transfer to catch Jeff Rosenstock of Bomb The Music Industry/Arrogant Sons Of Bitches play a solo show supporting his new album We Cool? opening for Andrew Jackson Jihad. I got to the venue right around the middle of first band Chumped playing and the place was decently packed for being so early.
I’m not really all that familiar with Chumped besides the fact they are a female fronted pop-punk band out of Brooklyn. I didn’t catch enough of their set to really form an opinion either way, but it seemed like those in the crowd were definitely digging it. So if you’re into bands like Nona or Spraynard you’d probably dig these guys.
The main reason I came, I’ve been a fan of Jeff Rosenstock’s bands and have seen them countless of times over many years. While technically he was doing a “solo” tour, he had a backing band with him. It was a bit strange to be seeing him in such a big venue like Union Transfer, but they didn’t act out of place at all, immediately joking to the crowd “What’s up New Jersey?” (which elicited both plenty of boos and cheers) before breaking into We Cool opener “Get Old Forever.”
The crowd was especially hyped, with people breaking out into a pit immediately and stage dives abound. Jeff and crew played a bunch off the new album and some of his older solo stuff, with a decent chunk coming off of I Look Like Shit and the crowd didn’t really let up all night. One thing I have to say is he definitely has a mixed-age crowd. I didn’t realize it, but a lot of younger kids dig him (I always assumed only old heads who followed his other bands did). Definitely a good time, go see him if you get the chance.
Get Old Forever
You, In Weird Cities
Beers Again, Alone
The Trash The Trash The Trash
Hall Of Fame
80s Through The 50s
The Smith Street Band are another one of those bands that get a lot of praise, but I never really got around to checking out. I was hanging in the back by the bar talking to some friends at this point after staying in the pit for Jeff Rosenstock, so I didn’t actually get to see them, but I did hear them. Hailing from Melbourne, Australia, The Smith Street Band played solid gritty rock tunes with ranging influences from folk punk to garage rock and even a bit of more Social Distortion type punk. I dug a few songs that I heard, and need to give them a proper listen sometime.
Andrew Jackson Jihad:
By the time Phoenix, Arizona’s Andrew Jackson Jihad took the stage, Union Transfer was pretty full. I honestly had no idea that these folk-punks were that big, and while I only knew a few songs here and there off some random EPs I have, their live set definitely made me a fan.
Armed with a variety of instruments including acoustic and electric guitars, a cello, drums, stand up bass, and keyboards the band played a very dynamic set to the incredibly responsive crowd. Their music reminded me a lot of Mischief Brew and Run, Forever.
Playing a majority of their set from off Knife Man and their latest Christmas Island albums, the band seemed in very high spirits and legitimately loved being there. The highlight was definitely their final encore, in which they did a sweet Slayer cover which had plenty of fans confused, but those who knew who it was were losing their shit. An incredible set, if you haven’t seen AJJ before then go do yourself a favor and catch them live.
The Michael Jordan Of Drunk Driving
Gift Of The Magi 2: Return Of The Magi
Hate & Kill
Hate Songs For The Brain
Hate Rain On Me
Kokopelli Face Tattoo
People II: The Reckoning
Love In The Time Of The Human Papillomavirus
Bad Bad Things
I Wanna Rock Out In My Dreams
Fucc The Devil
You Don’t Deserve Yourself
Children Of God
South Of Heaven (Slayer cover)