Pegboy and The Bollweevils 5/15 at Metro

I found it funny that I hadn’t been to the Metro in years and then all of a sudden I find myself going there twice in as many weeks. This time I made the trek over there to see two of Chicago’s finest punk bands: Pegboy and The Bollweevils (the latter being my motivation to attend). It was a good old fashioned punk rock show at a venue that used to play host to some of the best shows this city had ever seen “back in the day”.


Anxiety High


Anxiety High


Anxiety High

There was a steady stream of people constantly filing in the club when I arrived which was shortly before the first band, Anxiety High took the stage. They played some punchy melodic punk rock that Chicago has been famous for. Their songs were fairly catchy and for not having been a band for very long they had some pretty solid material.

After a pretty fast set change everyone’s favorite Rock and Roll bartender, Angelena came onstage to introduce two burlesque dancers who would be entertaining the crowd. They did their thing one at a time to a surprisingly apathetic crowd. I felt bad for the ladies because the crowd didn’t really pop for them at all, the people I could hear talking behind me actually seemed rather annoyed by the whole thing. Weird.


The Bollweevils


The Bollweevils


The Bollweevils


The Bollweevils

As soon as the ladies finished their business, The Bollweevils took the stage. This would be the highlight of the night for me because they were the reason I wanted to come to this show. After their last two performances I was really excited to see them again. They didn’t let me down and in fact this may have been the best of their shows since they re-formed. The band played some new material along with many of the hits and the new stuff is every it as good as anything they’ve done in the past. I find it pretty amazing how it feels like they never stopped playing and they just picked right up where they left off. I really hope they find the time to record the new songs sometime soon because a new Bollweevils record would have a happy home in the Vault.


Pegboy


Pegboy


Pegboy

The already large crowd seemed to inflate to an even larger size as Pegboy were setting up their equipment. The last time I saw them play was at the Touch and Go Records anniversary festival and they really weren’t very good that day. In fact in recent history I’ve seen more bad Pegboy shows than good ones. They always seemed to be sloppy and Larry would get too drunk and run out of breath. I was hoping that after taking a few years hiatus from seeing them play that this time I’d get a “good” Pegboy show.


Pegboy


Pegboy


Pegboy

When I saw them bring out a bottle of some hard liquor and set it on the drum riser, I thought my fears would be realized. I also however noticed a video crew preparing to film the show so I thought maybe there was hope. Fortunately there was validity to that hope as Larry was not already plastered when the band came out on stage. He started talking about all the shows he saw at Metro back in the old punk days and a couple of minutes later the band started playing and Larry was standing on the barricade leaning into the crowd so they can sing along.


Pegboy


Pegboy


Pegboy

The band sounded really tight and energetic. John Haggerty has such a unique and power guitar sound that it really knows no equal and it was spot-on this evening. I don’t know the bass players name but he was moving all over the place and full of energy too. Larry was quite coherent and it was the best singing I’ve heard him do in a decade. The certainly chose the right show to film. The crowd wasted no time starting a huge mosh pit and there were crowd surfers all over the place. I got kicked in the head by one who got tossed over the railing into the barricade up front but luckily I didn’t get clipped that hard so I was able to shake it off.

The band played about an hour and during one point Darryl from the Bollweevils came out and they did a couple of Bad Brains covers. Normally I’d be against such things but he actually sang those songs far better than H.R. did two years ago when the Bad Brains headlined Riot Fest! After that the band did a couple songs for an encore and then it was time to go.

It was a fun evening in an old school punk rock kind of way at the Metro this evening. I was really glad I drove down in the rain to go to the show and I hope to catch the bands again sometime in the near future.

More photos after the jump…

The Bollweevils


The Bollweevils


The Bollweevils


The Bollweevils


The Bollweevils


Pegboy


Pegboy


Pegboy