The Beat Kitchen played host to Big D and the Kids Table Fall Headline tour. With them came Have Nots, and Green Room Rockers. You can check out our review after the break.
Chicago’s Beat Kitchen is located north of the downtown area in the Roscoe Village neighborhood. This is an area that has an ambiance that’s described as being “hipster.” You know you’ve entered this hipster world when you pass by the “Bleeding Heart Bakery” on the way to the Beat Kitchen, which only makes the experience more intriguing. The Beat Kitchen as a whole is a bar with a small back room that’s used for live music, so after entering the building and wandering through the bar you come to a door that takes you to the dimly lit music area in the back. With an estimated capacity of around three hundred this is a small place which despite the heat, is a cool little place to catch a show.
Green Room Rockers opened the show to a small audience that had hardly started arriving yet. The Lafayette, IN-based group classifies themselves as reggae, ska, and soul, which had me confused at first, but only until I heard them jam out. These guys blew me away so much I had to start looking them up on my phone before I even got home. I caught the titles of three of their songs that I instantly fell in love with: “Basement Song,” “Broke,” and “Everyday.” Things that excited me about this set were the featured saxophone solos, the bass player Alex wearing his sunglasses in the dark room the whole set, and the fact that the people that had arrived early were digging the Green Room Rockers while they lit up the stage.
The Have Nots come from Boston, MA just like Big D and the Kids Tables, and they sure proved that Boston knows how to do punk rock. These guys got a great applause from the crowd that had finally started filling up the joint. A few songs these punkers rocked out were “Dead man,” “One In Four,” “Proud,” and “The Brink.” I really liked the sound that these guys brought to the show, but I couldn’t help but think that guitar player/second vocalist Jon Cauztik should have been singing all of the songs instead only a few. Jon seemed to be the one who had a true punk voice to him, while lead singer Matt Pruitt didn’t fit the sound as well.
By the time Big D and the Kids Table took the stage it was around 9:20pm, and the crowd was ready for the punk rock show to begin. Big D was first formed in 1995 so it was no surprise that they’ve had some time to perfect their incredible sound, even despite the eleven or so members that have circulated in and out of the band. These guys opened with their song “Myself”, which immediately set the small room in motion and had people jumping around and skanking their hearts out. My two favorite songs from the set that also had the crowd going wild were “Hell On Earth, “ and “Bender,” which is all about a wild drunken weekend. Big D’s set was somewhere in the neighborhood of an hour and half, so they played both old stuff as well as new stuff off their summer album release. A bunch of crowd favorites included, “Modern American Gypsy,” “Checklist,” “It’s Raining Zombies On Wall Street,” “Chicago,” “Noise Complaint,” and “Learning To Listen.” The set was finished with an eruption of moshing and crowed surfing when Big D pulled out the crowd’s all-time favorite, “LAX.” During Big D’s set lead singer Dave McWane said a few quote-worthy things: “My point is, we’re kick ass,” and “If you’re a shithead I do believe it’s going to follow you.” The group’s set was full of antics and they fed off the crowd’s wild energy all night. There was skanking, moshing, crowd surfing, and even a circle pit or two, but all in all the night was successful and Big D and Kid’s Table was happy to be back in Chicago, but not as happy as Chicago was to have them back.
Information about the review…
Tour: Big D and the Kids Table Fall Headline Tour
Reviewer: Mike Nutting
Bands: Big D and the Kids Table, Have Nots, and Green Room Rockers
Date: September 25, 2011
Venue: Beat Kitchen in Chicago, IL