Hey look! Bad pictures from this past Saturday’s RVIVR shows. Sadly, I’m not a great photographer, and i didn’t manage to get pictures of Dogjaw, who played both shows and was absolutely incredible. Seriously, check them out if you haven’t yet, because they were so good, passionate and yell-y (one of the vocalists sounded like Kathy from Circle Takes The Square, one of the highest compliments I can think of) and punk rock all the way. I also didn’t get any pictures of the night show’s opener, Extra Feeler, a Brooklyn three piece that played some fun punk rock. The legendary Shellshag also played the evening show, a duo that’s been around for close to twenty years. They opened with a music video and a home made commercial for their new action figures (!), and it was hilarious and adorable.
Both shows were so fucking good, y’all. I haven’t been to a show as good as either in a very long time, and I am beyond grateful I got the chance to see RVIVR twice, especially when I don’t know when the next time I’ll get to see them is. They’ve become one of my favorite bands recently and these shows just cemented it. Even after a month long tour in Europe, they were all smiles and unbridled joy throughout their sets, and seemed in awe of the crowds’ response, singing along to every word and being just as happy to be there as they were. Between the two shows they played almost every song off their two full lengths, including the recently released The Beauty Between. A few got played twice, including my favorite song off the new album “Wrong Way/One Way,” intro-ed as a song about being gender queer and being as queer as you want or need to be, and that’s cool.
I hate going to punk shows now. I hate the violence and machismo, and especially stage divers and crowd surfers, in particular those who get up by just jumping up on people until someone boosts them up. But these shows were the first I’ve been to in a long time where I didn’t hate everyone around me. Yeah, there was pushing and people hitting up against each other, but there was no malice, or trying to prove anything to anyone. I had a bit of space just to dance, which I much prefer to hitting and shoving people. I know there are scenes out there that are all about this sort of stuff, but it’s definitely hard to find in straight edge hardcore Syracuse, so I was overjoyed to be in the somewhat safer spaces of these shows.
On top of all the great music, I got to meet some awesome tumblr folks, including Mike, the drummer of The Homewreckers, who opened the afternoon show (and had my favorite lyrics of the day “And even when capitalism falls, I’ll still meet you at the shopping mall”), and Shady Hawkins, who y’all seem to really like. And that was super cool.