At the tall end of The Early November’s fall headline tour, we got to attend their show at The Bottom Lounge in Chicago. The tour also featured Cartel and Seahaven. You can check out our review after the break.
When I heard that Seahaven, Cartel, and The Early November were all touring together I got kind of excited. Maybe I’m just getting old, but I remember listening to The Early November way back in high school. And Cartel has always been a guilty pleasure band of mine. I was stoked to be able to go to a show and feel like a man in his early 20’s again.
Seahaven opened the night with a set of songs that sounded reminiscent of bands like Hey Mercedes, Daytrader, and Tigers Jaw. The crowd didn’t seem too familiar with the band, but by the end of the set most of the audience was swaying along to the songs. Seahaven seemed focused more on the songs as opposed to banter, giving very little introduction to the songs or telling stories, instead powering through one song and on to the next. The band peppered their set with songs like “Head in the Sand”, “Love”, and “Save Me”.
Cartel took the stage next and the fun didn’t stop for the rest of the night. They started their set with their first hit single “Luckie St.” and never slowed down. Cartel spent the vast majority of their set playing only one song off of their most recent EP. After the second song vocalist Will Pugh apologized to the crowd for sounding off key and for his voice cracking, as he was dealing with the lingering effects of an illness. The crowd didn’t seem to even notice because the entire set they were singing every lyric back to the band at the top of their collective lungs, sometimes rendering Pugh inaudible. Highlight songs included “Let’s Go”, “Honestly”, and “Burn This City”.
Then finally the moment the entire audience was anticipating arrived, The Early November took the stage. Anticipation was high for the band that recently released their first album of new material since their breakup six years ago. The crowd was swelling with excitement as the band started off with the song “Hair”. The entire band worked the stage with the same energy they had when they first started over ten years ago. Bassist Sergio Anello doubled as a “hype man”, working the crowd into a frenzy in the middle of songs, prompting high pitched shrieks from the women in the audience. The Early November entertained the crowd with a great mix of old and new songs, leaving everyone with a smile on their face as they exited the Bottom Lounge.
For a band that broke up six years ago and recently reunited The Early November still has the vitality and energy of a band that is just starting out. They still know how to work a crowd and play their collective hearts out. Cartel, a band that is probably most well known for being on MTV’s “Band in a Bubble” could easily be playing to crowds twice the size of the ones they are currently bringing in. And Seahaven is a band carving out their own path. All in all, the entire show was a joy to witness from start to finish.
Information about the review…
Tour: The Early November Fall Headline Tour
Bands: The Early November, Cartel, Seahaven
Date: October 19, 2012
Venue: The Bottom Lounge in Chicago, IL