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Transmission
« Lollapalooza 2011 - Your Guide to the Weekend Lollapalooza Day 1: Half days at work, lobster corn dogs, and a little band called Muse »

Review Fri Aug 05 2011

Alkaline Trio Sweat it Out @ the Metro

It's amazing what people will endure for the sake of nostalgia — 90 plus degree temps, oppressive humidity, noticeably absent a/c, short people jammed into taller peoples' armpits, random sprays of liquids (sweat in the worst case beer in the best case). According to the Metro crowd, it was all worth it when the first deep beats of Alkaline Trio's Derek Grant's kick drum pounded over the heat or when Dan Andriano's bass line commanded head convulsions. The hometown punk trio ran through an athletic 22 song set, including one Violent Femmes cover, in front of their signature skulled heart, awash in aggressive red lighting.

Alkaline Trio @ Metro_1 GB.jpg
Alkaline Trio on Monday night at the Metro (Photos by Katie Hovland)

By 10pm, the bodies filling Metro wall-to-wall were eager for a distraction from sticky jeans and sweaty brows. Skinny singer Matt Skiba, in an even skinnier red tie, answered anxious audience demands by launching into angsty yells of set opener, "Armageddon"; too appropriate to have been coincidental. The crowd temporarily forgot its heat with knee-jerk mosh pit moves in reaction to the straight line drum beats and heavy hitting power chords. Oh yes, it was that kind of night.

Alkaline Trio @ Metro_2 GB.jpg
Alkaline Trio on Monday night at the Metro (Photos by Katie Hovland)

Amid fist-pumping crowd surfers, Skiba and Andriano traded vocal duties back and forth throughout the night, intermittently sharing those duties with the crowd. Andriano took over for "In Vein" and back to Skiba for "Private Eye", "Snake Oil Tanker", passing it back to Andriano for a jockish rendition of "Blue Carolina". Both vocalist passed their duties to the crowd during "Armageddon" and "Cooking Wine" for one giant chorus yell-along. The sold out Metro crowd turned into a single, throbbing uber fan.

Derek Grant, meanwhile, pounded out his set while remaining dark and brooding, just like you remember Alkaline Trio lyrics: heart ache soaked in alcohol for comfort: "sorry I'm late/I was out spoiling my liver/ I couldn't wait/ the sun was up for far too long today I'm late". And that's exactly what was going on with all the livers in the room.

The sweaty Trio slowed it down and softened their set with Skiba's acoustic version of "Clavicle" (I've always had a soft spot for this one — acoustically it definitely hit the spot) and a string of additional acoustic numbers before covering Violent Femmes and encoring the parched crowd with "Crawl" and "97". By set close only the fans had survived.

Alkaline Trio @ Metro_3 GB.jpg
Alkaline Trio on Monday night at the Metro (Photos by Katie Hovland)

[Note: Due to illness, our photographer attended Monday night's Metro show, while the writer reviewed Tuesday night's show.]

 
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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.

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