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Review Wed Jul 28 2010

Review: Gaslight Anthem @ House of Blues, 7/27

Gaslight Anthem_2.jpg
Gaslight Anthem's Brian Fallon (photos by Katie Hovland)

When the Gaslight Anthem played Bottom Lounge last April, singer Brian Fallon's vocals were a mess. (But he was pretty sick, as they cancelled the next couple shows.) When they came back around in August, it was my turn to be sick. (I barely made it through Constantines that night.) On Tuesday at House of Blues, though, everybody was in good health. Even if they weren't, they probably still had a good time.

Gaslight Anthem_1.jpg
Gaslight Anthem's Alex Levine (photos by Katie Hovland)

Touring in support of their latest album, American Slang, Gaslight Anthem was firing on all cylinders with a 90-minute set that featured sizable chunks from all three full-lengths. The show began with the new record's title track that quickly built up into their Americana-tinged punk with chunky hooks and Fallon's working class stories. From the onset the sold out audience was completely enthralled. After two more newer songs, the band went back a couple years for perhaps their most popular song, "The '59 Sound." It's a bold move to bust out your hit so early, but Gaslight Anthem clearly have the confidence in their other tunes to not let it be their peak. And soon enough they were pacing themselves (and the audience) by dropping the tempo with "Even Cowgirls Get the Blues" and "Miles Davis & The Cool" before playing songs from their debut album seamlessly mixed in with some American Slang.

Gaslight Anthem_3.jpg
Gaslight Anthem's Alex Rosamilia (photos by Katie Hovland)

Three albums (and some EPs) into their career, each release has taken on a different angle of their malleable sound, so it's not a strain to hear songs from years ago alongside ones released last month. With that being said, a risk runs in songs sounding too much alike. Late in the show I twice thought they started a song they'd already played. Only when lyrics began did I realize my mistake. Of course, a strong majority of the audience were never in doubt as they screamed along to nearly every word Fallon sang. (Only "Blue Jeans & White T-Shirts" from a 2008 EP and a cover of Lucero's "The War" tripped up the most vocal.) With such devotion, it's hardly a surprise that Gaslight Anthem's popularity has swelled. The way things are going, I wouldn't expect a dropoff either.

Gaslight Anthem.jpg
Brian Fallon (photos by Katie Hovland)

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drunk with power / July 29, 2010 11:36 AM

I was wondering why they were so lame at that bottom lounge show. They more than made up for it on Tuesday, nice review. I dug the long set.

Marisa / July 29, 2010 12:52 PM

Nice review - and GREAT photos, wow. I was also there and did a review for Lost In Concert if you'd like to check it out.

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Feature Thu Dec 31 2015

Our Final Transmission Days

By The Gapers Block Transmission Staff

Transmission staffers share their most cherished memories and moments while writing for Gapers Block.

Read this feature »


  Chicago Music Media

Alarm Magazine
Big Rock Candy Mountain
Boxx Magazine
Brooklyn Vegan Chicago
Can You See The Sunset From The Southside
Chicago Reader Music
Chicagoist Arts & Events
Chicago Music Guide
Chicago Singles Club
Country Music Chicago
Cream Team
Dark Jive
The Deli Chicago
Jim DeRogatis
Fake Shore Drive
Gowhere Hip Hop
The Hood Internet
Jaded in Chicago
Largehearted Boy
Little White Earbuds
Live Fix Blog
Live Music Blog
Loud Loop Press
Oh My Rockness
Pop 'stache
Pop Matters
Resident Advisor
Sound Opinions
Sun-Times Music Blog
Theft Liable to Prosecution
Tribune Music
UR Chicago
Victim Of Time
WFMU's Beware of the Blog
Windy City Rock


Abbey Pub
Andy's Jazz Club
Aragon Ballroom
Auditorium Theatre
Beat Kitchen
Bottom Lounge
Buddy Guy's Legends
The Burlington
California Clipper
Concord Music Hall
Congress Theater
Cubby Bear
Double Door
Elbo Room
Empty Bottle
Green Mill
The Hideout
Honky Tonk BBQ
House of Blues
Kingston Mines
Lincoln Hall
Logan Square Auditorium
Mayne Stage
The Mutiny
Old Town School of Folk Music
Park West
The Promontory
Red Line Tap
Reggie's Rock Club & Music Joint
The Riviera
Thalia Hall
The Shrine
Symphony Center
Tonic Room
Uncommon Ground
The Vic
The Whistler

  Labels, Promoters
  & Shops:

Alligator Records
Beverly Records
Bloodshot Records
Dave's Records
Delmark Records
Drag City
Dusty Groove
Flameshovel Records
Groove Distribution
He Who Corrupts
Jam Productions
Jazz Record Mart
Kranky Records
Laurie's Planet of Sound
Minty Fresh
Numero Group
mP Shows
Permanent Records
Reckless Records
Smog Veil Records
Southport & Northport Records
Thick Records
Thrill Jockey Records Touch & Go/Quarterstick Records
Victory Records

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Transmission is the music section of Gapers Block. It aims to highlight Chicago music in its many varied forms, as well as cover touring acts performing in the city. More...
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