Despite being the second to last night of the tour, none of the bands were showing any signs of burnout when The Gaslight Anthem’s Get Hurt tour made its stop in Indianapolis.
To open the show, Jersey boy Sammy Kay and his band walked on stage, gathered around drummer Aaron Cote’s kit for a quick huddle and launched in to their set. Although the band seems to be an amalgamation of players from various projects there are very few bands that seem to have as much fun playing together as the guys backing Sammy Kay seem to have.
Sammy Kay swims in a genre all his own. You can hear hints of the punk influenced folk-rock legends like Waxwing or Whiskeytown, but Kay’s vocals have such a deep soulfulness to them that it definitely makes him stand out from the rest of the pack.
Matthew Goud’s project Northcote was up next. In the early 2000’s, Goud spent eight years touring North America as the guitarist/vocalist for hardcore band MEANS, so to see him fronting a folk-rock band was an interesting change. Goud’s vocals are raw and raspy, but totally effortless, and fit the genre quite well.
After Goud finished a hearty solo performance of “Worry,” off 2014’s Invisible Diamonds EP, he started in to the title track “Invisible Diamonds.” Midway through the first verse the rest of the band and the guys in Sammy Kay walked on stage and all huddled around a mic, providing back-up vocals. It was a special moment where the bonds formed between the bands on tour were clearly evident.
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The Gaslight Anthem appeared just before 10 p.m. to a crowd that had tripled in size since the night began. The band opened with the understated track “Have Mercy,” which made for a less-than-invigorating start to their set. Fans were clearly thrilled to have the band on stage, but it was a surprising choice to start off with a whisper rather than a roar.
That would change by the second song though, as they launched into “Howl” and the crowd followed suit, providing overwhelming howls of their own during the chorus. One thing that really stood out about the show was the wide range of ages.
There were many fans who appeared to be in their 50’s-60’s, but there were also a number of young children who seemed pretty excited about the show as well- not many bands can pull that off.
Throughout the night fans of all ages were dancing with abandon, sometimes solo, sometimes with a partner, and in at least one case, grabbing the stranger next to them to join in!
This show and this band clearly meant something so much more than “just music” to so many people in the audience. You could almost see the memories running through fans’ minds when you looked into their eyes as they watched the band, singing every word right alongside singer Brian Fallon.
The Gaslight Anthem responded to their fans’ devotion in kind, doing all they could to ensure everyone got their money’s worth. The band stayed on stage until well past 11 p.m., playing an impressive 25-song set, that included covers of “House of the Rising Sun” and an especially entertaining rendition of The Who’s “Baba O’Riley.”
If you didn’t make it out to a stop on the Get Hurt tour, you missed a fantastic show, chock full of talent new and old. Thankfully, none of the bands on the bill are showing any signs of slowing down, so be sure to make it out to a show the next time any of them are in your town.
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