Amebix 5/29 at Reggie’s

Reggie’s has played host to a lot of good punk shows as of late and one that I was very excited to see happened last week. The legendary UK band, Amebix, reunited and came to Chicago for the first time ever only two plus decades after they broke up!


Tierra De Nadie


Tierra De Nadie


Tierra De Nadie

Tierra De Nadie started the evening off right with some pretty speedy hardcore. They sang all their songs in Spanish (at least that was how it sounded to me).  They had a lot of energy and a lot of aggression. Their songs were mostly pretty short and most stuck to the band’s formula. Many people in the crowd seemed to be digging them and I found them to be pretty enjoyable as well.


Nema


Nema


Nema

A pretty quick set change later, Nema took the stage. Apparently these guys hadn’t played a show in a very long time. I heard they were from the MI area in the 1990s. If I hadn’t been told all this information I would have thought they were a pretty new band that has been active for awhile because they showed no signs of rust. They had two singers who would scream and howl like banshees over their spastic punk/metal hybrid. I thought they had some pretty good songs but many started to sound the same until near the end of their set when some of the songs had some cool tempo changes. I could see they had the building blocks to be something pretty damn cool, it’s a shame they didn’t really stick to it and they stopped playing ago. I guess for the time period they were active the band was ahead of the curve.


Victims


Victims


Victims

Next up was a band from Sweden named Victims. I was a bit confused to their choice of band names since there has been at least two other punk bands with that same name over the years. I was all set to just dismiss them for their lack of google ability when the band took the stage and started playing. They had such power and intensity that I completley forgot my disdain for their name recycling and I was pretty captivated by how great they were. Their songs were kind of on the short side and were just these perfect pieces of intensity. The crowd were way into them and people started bumping into me like crazy which made shooting start to get difficult. If I had cash on me I would have bought everything this band was selling because they were that good and I vow to go see them play again the next time they come through town. What a pleasant surprise!


Amebix


Amebix

After some setup and sound checking, Amebix took the stage to a club that had filled up quite full by this point. I saw people of all ages in the crowd but it was definitely skewed much more toward the younger side of things which I found to be quite interesting considering how long ago it had been since the band called it quits. They were very eager to have the band start playing as was I and we soon got our wishes.


Amebix


Amebix

The band opened with “Winter” and the crowd went apeshit. There were kids bouncing all over the place, raising fists and singing along to the chorus. The band sounded amazing and the sound in the club sounded far better than it’s usual already high standards. I stood there in awe of this mystical band on stage playing and sounding like they not only quit but also have not aged one bit. Their choice of songs seemed to be real crowd pleasers too as it seemed they knew every song and got more excited as each one started.


Amebix


Amebix

They did a good job grouping together the more thrashier sounding numbers with the longer, slower and heavier songs and when they started playing “I.C.B.M” I nearly shit myself because that is my aboslute favorite Amebix song and seeing them play it live was one of those magical musical moments that you can only experience and never accurately describe.


Amebix


Amebix

Hearing these songs live brought out something in them that the band was never quite able to capture on their records. I could hear just how and why the band is so revered and considered so influential. In fact I really hope they recorded some of the shows from this tour and will release a live album because it would really further cement the band’s legacy in musical history. This show far exceeded my expectations and I wish they would come back and do it one more time!