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Show Review: The Gaslight Anthem with Matt Mays
Show Review: The Gaslight Anthem with Matt Mays
04/28/13 at 08:41 PM by Ryan Gardner
The Gaslight Anthem with Matt Mays
Stubb’s in Austin, TX on April 26th, 2013

Check out my photos from the concert here.

Does The Gaslight Anthem even need an introduction at this point? The band has pretty much taken over the rock and roll scene of today. With that being said, I’ll admit I was a late(r) fan of them than most around here. Still, they are currently one of my favorite bands, have been for awhile, and will probably remain for many, many years down the road. If you haven’t realized it yet, this is a band that has mass appeal to both our generation and our parent’s generation – and there’s something to be said about that nowadays, as it’s nearly impossible to find.

Matt Mays opened the show with a solid 45 minute set. Blending Southern rock with Bon Jovi-esque influences, Mays and crew came across as an ideal opener for Gaslight. Dominating the stage with massive guitar solos and a good ol’ Southern rock sound, the band really knew how to put on a rock show to the nearly sold out crowd. Loud and rocking, Matt Mays are a band to continue to watch out for, and definitely a band to hit up if they’re in a town near you. Check out Coyote for any further proof.

The Gaslight Anthem wasted absolutely no time once on stage, opening with the rapid “Howl” as the “hey-hey-heys” tore through the massive crowd. From there, it was over 20 songs of rock ‘n roll. Let’s face it, if you haven’t figured this out yet, Brian Fallon just gets it. He was born to rock and has complete control over the crowd, mic, and guitar to prove it.

New cuts such as “Handwritten,” “Here Comes My Man,” and “Too Much Blood” came across in top-notch fashion live, and the band even snuck in “Blue Dahlia,” as Fallon stated, “I don’t why we didn’t put this one on the record.” Another great surprise was the heartfelt “Blue Jeans & White T-Shirts” and later extremely emotional “National Anthem,” as Fallon clearly isn’t afraid to slow things down on stage – it’s not all rock all the time.

“American Slang” and “The ’59 Sound” are absolute live staples, as expected, but the song that really made the crowd wild was the final “The Backseat.” The song could not have been a more perfect selection to end the night with, as the crowd yelled, “And in the backseat we just tried to find some room to breathe,” as loud as possible.

Moreover, Fallon is an incredibly lively frontman even when he’s not singing. In between and before songs, he discussed memories of Austin, as well comments about songwriting, lyrics, and various random songs, such as Nelly’s “Ride With Me.” Both insightful and equally comedic, Fallon’s on stage comments bring the band to life even more, as it’s always nice when band members offer bits of personality on stage in between the music.

To me, The Gaslight Anthem just sounds like American rock music should. Listening to their records makes me wonder what it must have been like growing up in the 70s or 80s, and I can’t help but feel like this is the type of music my dad and his friends grew up listening to. Gaslight represent the new face of rock and roll music, and each member delivers exactly this on stage. Seeing the band live made me realize exactly why we all their songs so much – simpler, older times brought to life today. As one of the defining rock bands of our generation, The Gaslight Anthem know exactly how to execute a rock concert all the way through the encore.

Check out my photos from the concert here.

-Ryan Gardner
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