Jon Wayne and the Pain hit Chicago on their recent spring tour and the crowd was in for a treat because Wookiefoot made a special headline apperiance on the bill at Reggie’s Rock Club. You can check out our review of the tour after the break.
Jon Wayne and the Pain brought their spring tour to Chicago with Wookiefoot and Fifth World on May 12 at Reggie’s Rock Club. Reggie’s is located on the Near Southside part of Chicago, which is really only just south of the Loop, located on State Street. I was personally extremely excited to see Jon Wayne and the Pain, and to discover some mostly unfamiliar music with Wookiefoot. The weather did not hold out on the day of the show, so driving over to the city in the rain had me feeling that I was going to end up waiting in the bad weather. I was right. The advertised time that I was told had been 7pm for doors, and the show starting soon after that. On the way to the venue I called Reggie’s and they corrected me by saying doors were at 8pm instead, and the show was set to begin at 8:30. That was ok, so I made a detour, found some food, and the evening was going alright. About 8:15 I parked my car and headed to stand in the already-forming line, but there was no sign of the doors opening. For the next hour and a half the entire crowd stood in the rain waiting for Reggie’s to open their doors. There was no explanation as to why this happened, and there were certainly no apologies.
Upon entering the venue and dealing with my ticketing situation I found that the venue looked quite a bit different than the last time I had been there. Last I had occupied Reggie’s was in early November, so it was quite a surprise to see hippy-looking tapestries covering the walls as well as a large paper dragon hanging from the ceiling. The crowd was finally filling the venue, everybody was looking to dry off a little from the rain, get a tasty drink, and wait for the magic to begin.
Fifth World was a very funky group that started jamming around 9:40pm. This nine-piece band had everything from soul and hip-hop, all the way to acid jazz and psychedelic dub. Fifth World, I found out, prides themselves on their lyrics which are filled with positive messages for social consciousness reform. These guys and gal really knew how to rock the joint because they had the entire venue bouncing, and that isn’t usually the case for opening acts. Fifth World, along with the usual instruments, also crowded on stage a few horn players, with a synthesizer player taking center stage as well. This band is from Chicago, so I expect to be seeing them around town at different shows, this is not an act that I want to forget about.
Jon Wayne and the Pain is one of those bands that never seems to stop touring. Now that I finally got a chance to see them perform, I understand what all the hype is about with these guys. Jon Wayne and the Pain is an independent “reggaetronic dub, and jam” band hailing from Minneapolis, Minnesota. The three guys that make up this extraordinary group, Jon Wayne, Chuckie Torgerson, and Tito Miller, all have the common interest of staying on the road and touring, and that’s one of the things that make them great. It must be a combination of a grueling tour schedule and excellent musicianship that makes this bands jam. There was really only one song that I was hoping to hear, and I gladly grooved to the beat when they met my wishes and played “Life Irie.” From their more current release they played “Move Away,” as well as “Festival Friends,” which isn’t even on either of their albums. What was even more fun, besides their already incredible songs, was the trippy dub tunes that rocked hard on the synthesizer, LED stage lights, and wobbly bass hits.
Wookiefoot was a whole other beast entirely. These guys went on around 12:30am and didn’t stop playing for about 2.5 hours. “Be Fearless and Play,” “Domesticated,” “Activate,” Think You’re Free,” and “Home Free” were just a few songs from their massive set. Wookiefoot is a reggae/jam/psychedelic band that can’t be described in fewer than three genres. At times there were more than 8 people on stage performing for this band, with instruments ranging from guitar and drums, to sax, flute, and bag pipes. Even Wookiefoot’s opening number consisted of a dubbed bagpipe song that rocked Reggie’s incredibly hard. “Junk Food,” “Out of the Jar,” and “Don’t Should On Me” are a few other tunes from their ridiculously energetic set. Wookiefoot proved to have surprises as well, inviting guests on stage at different intervals of their set. Jon Wayne was welcomed on stage for a few songs, including “Overboard,” as well as Chicago rapper Phillip Morris who was also welcomed to the stage. The last thing I expected from a Minnesota-based band was to invite a rapper who I have been following for quite some time on stage to perform. Phillip Morris tore up the mic and rocked Reggie’s right along with Wookiefoot, adding a little Chicago flavor to the show. Wookiefoot finished up their massive set and disappeared off stage, inciting a massive chant from the audience that guaranteed they’d come back. Wookiefoot returned to the stage for three or four encores. I lost count with the blending dub rhythms and crazy dancing audience that was distracting me. The show ended in an explosion of dub/air-raid siren sounding beautifulness, and with that, the show was over.
I quickly got over having to wait in the rain after this show started, and I believe everybody else did as well. These three bands brought happiness and good vibes to Chicago, and I really hope they do so again soon.
Information about the review…
Tour: Jon Wayne and the Pain Spring Tour
Bands: Wookiefoot, Jon Wayne and the Pain, and Fifth World
Reviewer: Michael Nutting
Date: May 12, 2012
Venue: Reggie’s Rock Club in Chicago, IL