The Lawrence Arms Stoke Grog Shop with High Energy Show

Concert Review

The Lawrence Arms, lost in the relative darkness of the Grog.
  • The Lawrence Arms, lost in the relative darkness of the Grog.
I don't go to punk shows too often, but each time I do I'm drawn back into what seems to be a tight-knit community emblazoned with passion and dedication to the music. That's pretty much what I got last night when The Lawrence Arms trucked through the Grog Shop and delivered a super fast-paced show bent mostly on the strength of their most recent album.

Truth be told, I didn't know much of the setlist. I had listened to the Lawrence Arms' earlier stuff during a particularly focused four-month period of punk & hardcore music during my college years, but a lot of my sensory memory of that time had faded. Rather, I headed east to the Grog Shop last night in search of something visceral.

I waded toward the front of the crowd, whiskey in hand, and found myself leaving behind the worries of my Monday (work stuff, personal stuff, ongoing near-Herculean attempts to get portions of my car repaired, etc.). The audience was talking pretty loudly among themselves, but the singers onstage in each band were intense enough to rise above the din. By the time the Lawrence Arms hit the stage, everyone was dialed in.

All I can really say, though, about the show itself was it was fun. Now and then, regardless of your own affinities, it's worthwhile to go to a punk show and get up front and at least consider leaping into the mosh pit before realizing that your knees aren't what they used to be and, well, maybe it'd just be best to hang by the bar, but, then again, punk shows are meant to be taken in FAST and IMMEDIATELY and NOW and, so, it's probably best to, yes, return to the front of the crowd and lift your fist skyward and nod your head aggressively and turn to the person next to you and scream fuuuuuckkk yeaaahhhh!

I also caught Sam Russo's acoustic opening slot and The Copyights' set, both of which framed the stage really well for the rest of the evening.