The 12th installment of my 14-part MCR concert reviews series.
My Chemical Romance, Billy Talent, Drive By and David Costa at the Congress Theater in Chicago.
This review was written at the time of the show and has received only light editing.
It is April 16th, 2008, and I'm at school staring at the clock all day, just waiting for the moment the final bell will ring so that I can hurry home with Emily, meet Joey and we can head off to the Windy City...
So much terrible luck has slapped me in the face just before the trip that I can hardly believe we were actually going, and I know at this point that MCR shows are the best therapy...
We headed out that day, drove through the vast savanna that is Indiana and finally found civilization in the Chicago skyline at night. Somewhere in the midst of our drive, the clock had turned back; so, we were a bit more tired than the early world around us when we arrived at the City Suites Hotel and got settled in.
First of all, let me tell you that I love almost everything about Chicago- the pace, the grime, the tiny hotel room, the FUCKING CITY, dude. I'm pretty sure that I will live there one day.
So, we were in for the night, watched "The Legend of Old Gregg," then went to sleep, me with my alarm set for 4:30 a.m.
Before that alarm had even sounded, I was awake, dressed and lying in bed waiting for an excuse to wake everyone up. Sadly, it was long after 4:30 when everyone finally woke up; then, my mom delayed us even more by making us wait for her to finish her bath because she decided she was going to drive us to the Congress Theatre that morning.
It was ridiculous. We got lost on the way and didn't get there until around 9:00 a.m., which is a crazy hour to arrive at an MCR show these days. We were about 40th in line, I'd say, and we knew we had no chance of being in the front, but I could deal with that for the day, since we were to see the show the next day as wekk.
The line-wait was pretty fun. We met a couple girls from Iowa, and a lovely girl named Harriet from the UK, who was AWESOME! We all stood in this strange little nook that Emily and I decided to call "the grinder." It provided us a tiny bit of shade from what was to become a very vibrant sun around noon.
The annoying thing is that we had to walk about 4 blocks to go to the bathroom at Dunkin Donuts where they made us buy their shitty coffee or something every time.
Eventually, we ended up walking farther to a gas-station. I didn't mind walking so much: I loved seeing all the dirty, condemned-ass buildings.
So, anyway- we waited and waited, staring at the
store across from us, that we called the "disco store" until we realized the next day that it actually said "discount."
At about 4:45 p.m., everyone stood up and the line started moving forward. People from the end started jumping in front of the people at the beginning. Screaming and pushing ensued, and we ended up in the lobby in one gigantic mass, nowhere near where any of us were before in line, and with even more people pushing their way through. Everyone was so compact and tense, and - as an entity - we lurched and swayed, ominous of what was to come when, almost an hour later, they released us.
The mob took off at a dead run, and, as we moved, I could literally hear the thuds of bodies hitting the ground and cries coming from all sides of me. I clung to my friends for dear life (Harriet in front of me, Emily by her, Joey behind me, and our Iowa friends at our other side) as we were pushed through the hall to the end of it, where we came to a single open door the size of a normal house-entrance. That door was only open because the girl who got there first shoved the security guard out of the way and seriously KICKED IN the door. So, we started exploding through the door, getting stuck for a moment, then bursting forth. Somewhere in the midst of it someone or something had struck me in the eye, which would result in a sore cheek for a few weeks following. Anyway, I finally burst through the door because of the pressure behind me, lost Joey and took off running to the floor to avoid being trampled, spotted Emily and Harriet and crashed in beside them in about the fifth row of people. I looked behind me in a panic for Joey, finally spotted him and waved him to us.
From where we were, it was quite hard to see, but I could see bits and pieces of
The Chicago crowd had the special treat of his opening. I must say, I'm not into much rap-driven stuff, but David Costa really impressed me. The energy of the set was great, and everyone was pretty into it. The only issue I had was the sound in the venue- the bass was a killer, dude, and not in a good way. Anyway, David Costa = decent ownage.
Drive By came next, and having not really heard much from them, I didn't know what to expect, but they too were impressive. I still want, but haven't gotten any of their CDs. There are a couple songs I can remember. One sounded like the singer was saying, "You're boring!" a lot, another was the "I'm stuck in America..." one. I really liked them, for sure.
Billy Fucking Talent! I had never really listened to these guys before, either, which is a Damn!Shame; because, I love them now. They came out playing the intro of "This is How it Goes," which has to be some of the most exciting music ever- it just got everyone super-hyped, and their set was absolutely relentless as far as energy. All the songs were catchy and caused a plethora of epic movement among we crowdians. They were Awesome! I remember thinking, because of the singer's voice and the catchiness and quickness of their songs, that a good description for them would be "Chuck-E-Cheese-Core." Yea, I mean that in the absolute best way possible.
"When MCR comes out, do me a favor and ask them who beat their asses at Wirly Ball today."
By the time MCR were about to come on, we had had our fair share of crowd experiences, including one where a woman had brought her LITTLE kids into the crowd and they were taken out, and the mother was told they wouldn't be able to sit in front of the barricade and security fought with her, then the lady next to her (who was next to us) fought with her. It was CRAZY.
We had already helped a crazy amount of kids out of the crowd and the most brutal part of the show had yet to come.
Needless to say, we were a little exhausted, but I wasn't going to get out of the crowd at the front until I absolutely had to.
So, then came My Chemical Romance.
They came out to the flashing and movement of lights and this the FUCKING THEME FROM KARATE KID, which seemed extremely suitable for "Diva!Gerard, the hip-swayer." Taha! I can't remember the set exactly, but I think they opened with "This is How I Disappear," which is starting the show off with a bang! The crowd was wild, and we were moving so much that I could hardly see stage; so, we stayed where we were for a few songs, then moved to the back of the crowd.
I think I mentioned in my review of the Columbus MCR show in 2005 how strange I think the back-of-the-crowd demographic is. People dressed up, ladies actually holding their purses, space between people, people actually drinking with straws and everything. It's so strange a place to be and so strange are the strangers you're among at the back of the crowd- and so far are you from the stage, but you can see!
So, the whole seeing thing is what attracted us to that strange back-wasteland where we were the only ones moving practically and got stares and amused grins for it. I think I almost knocked the lady in front of me down a few times, because I was jumping so hard and was on a slope. I was a good girl and kept my space, but I could hardly contain myself when THEY PLAYED ALL THREE B-SIDES! Soooo exciting!
I really can't remember the set now, but I know that it was epic. I started crying like crazy during "Famous Last Words" and during "Kill all Your Friends" when Gerard sang the "you'll never take me alive" part and instructed everyone to put their middle fingers in the air: "And if that's not e-fucking-nough put 'em both up!" Trust me, both of mine were up!
- Gerard announced to the crowd that the next MCR CD would consist of "fucking cowboy songs!" and then sang "Home, home on the Range"
- People were throwing shoes, and Gerard was all, "I don't need ya shoes. I got my own shoes *kicks up foot* I got shoes and shoes and shoes..."
- "HEADFIRST FOR HALOS"!!! I hadn't heard them play anything from "….Bullets" since 2005, I believe; so, I lost my shit when they started to play it. I was really bummed in the middle, though, because they stopped the song before the hand-claps. I was like, "whoa, wait- where's the rest of it?" Then, I realized there was some sort of track thing skipping in the background- that sounded sort of like an interview clip, then Gerard counted off and the music started back up and they finished the song. Ah, it was great!
- Gerard's after "Mama" quote- "I don't care how much it costs. I don't want one, not two; I want them all. I don't care how much it costs." LOL. Everyone was like, "What the hell?"
-This little boy, who had to be about 8-years-old was going absolutely crazy and air-guitaring INSANELY. During "…Prison," at the "I wont go down by myself, but I'll go down with my friends" part, I pointed at him and he at me and we went crazy together. It was one of the most refreshing and awesome things to see someone that young, that innocent and new, just having a good fucking time and getting lost in the music. Awesome.
-They played a GORGEOUS acoustic version of "Vampires Will Never Hurt you" I think I almost had a heart attack. Sadly, they didn't play the entire song, but it was such an amazing version of the song that I absolutely melted… and cried.
-MIKEY FUCKIN WAY! This was definitely his comeback tour after the Projekt Rev hiatus. He came back new and improved for sure. He wasn't hiding behind his brother the whole time. He stood at the front of the stage the whole time and he actually MOVED!
2005 Taste of Chaos | Green Day & MCR | Warped Tour, Columbus | Warped Tour, Charlotte | 2005 Headlining tour, Columbus | 2005 Headlining Tour, Ypsilanti | Headlining tour, Atlanta | Headlining tour, Canada | The Black Parade tour 2007, Atlanta | Projekt Revolution- Tampa, FL | Projekt Revolution- Raleigh, NC |
The reason behind this blog series