They came out swinging — jumping onto stage with no introduction. All the band needed was electric guitars and hard-core drumming, rocking their first major hit from 2003, “Swing, Swing” from their self-titled album.
The All-American Rejects concert rocked SLO Brewing Co. last week. It was for sure one of the best concerts I have ever been to.
Tyson Ritter, the lead vocalist for the band as well as bass guitarist, sounded great live, very similar to the CD and radio version. The singer was a little weird though, in an amazingly rockin’ way, of course. It seemed Ritter’s vocabulary consists of nothing but “fuck” and “shit.”
“Fucking San Luis Obispo! Fuck, how you bitches doing tonight? Shit.”
Or, referring to a giant pole to the side of the stage: “Nick Wheeler, everybody, behind this fuckin’ pole. Shit, what the fuck? We shoulda got this fuckin’ pole removed, shit.”
Normally, it would bother me, but in this circumstance, it was hilarious.
Eventually, Ritter introduced everyone on stage. Nick Wheeler, the lead guitarist, got lots of applause and rocked out along with it (though he kinda looked like he was making love to his guitar). Chris Gaylor, drummer, also pounded his musical barrels to his applause. Finally, Ritter introduced the other guitarist Mike Kennerty, but he didn’t say anything.
“Come on, this is your chance,” Ritter said, and he still didn’t. All the band members laughed and Ritter called him a “man of few words.”
The band played songs from past albums such as “Move Along,” “It Ends Tonight,” and “Top of the World.” The Rejects also introduced some new material off their new album, “Kids in the Street.” As a matter of fact, the band played their new hit “Kids in the Street” for the first time ever live, according to Ritter.
While I loved the whole concert, the encore was definitely the best part. The band finished their initial set, said goodbye and walked off the stage. The crowd was chanting “encore,” “one more song,” and, of course, “Gives You Hell!” The latter was by far the loudest. Finally, they came back on stage to a roar of applause and cheer. Ritter said they were going to play another song for us, then he asked if there was anyone out there we just loved to hate.
Instant screams. Ritter said this was a song for that person “who you just want to see fail.” He also pointed out a couple in the audience who hadn’t let go of one another all night. Ritter told them that four or five years from now, when they were done with high school or college or whatever, they’d be singing this song about each other.
“Gives You Hell” is an awesome song live — a great alternative rock/kick ass song that everyone at SLO Brewing Co. sang along to. I don’t think I’ll ever listen to it the same way again.
The concert was loud. Louder than any “neons” or “highlighter” party I’ve ever been too. Even though my ears were ringing by the end of the night, I’m glad it was so loud, because it was genuine live rock music.
Personally, I prefer real music with actual instruments over synthesized sound that comes from a computer any day.
Even though I got home late and had a midterm at 7 a.m. the next morning, I am so happy I went. Please, Rejects, come back soon!