Chicagoís Q101 kicked the holiday season off right Thursday night inside of the cityís largest indoor venue, the United Center. The radio station event pulled in Pete Yorn, Alien Ant Farm, Puddle of Mudd, Sum 41,Bush, The Crystal Method, 311, and Blink-182 to rock the socks off of local teens (and of course the ever-present guy in his 50ís trying to be cool for his kids). Between act entertainment was provided by Fook, Twitch, and Sludge, as well as a number of other Q101 jocks with short one-word nicknames. As I entered the building around 5ish, amongst a parade of Blink-182 look alikes, I grabbed a beer, proceeded to my seat to check out the scene, and was greeted almost immediately by my man Pete Yorn who broke into his set without a mere hello to the crowd. Iíd venture to say that no one really noticed as most of the crowd was still wandering the halls trying to figure out how to get someone to buy beer for them. Regardless, Pete Yorn and company gave it their all by kicking out such musical treats as "For Nancy," "Life on a Chain," and the Bowie-penned "China Girl." which ended in Yornís bass player kicking his Marshal stack, into the drum set, and sending his guitar flying. Yorn followed suit with some good distance on his guitar launching (Iíd give it a 8.0 for style, 7.5 for distance) and led the charge offstage amongst the pleasant sounds of feedback. And that was just the first act!
After Pete Yornís ear-piercing exit, I was whisked away backstage to partake in the free food, complimentary Mikeís Hard Lemon-aid (big sponsor of the evening) and some delightful conversation with some label reps (youíll see no name dropping here).
As I re-grouped, caught Alien Ant Farm, and Puddle of Mudd, who both cranked up the volume and got the crowd heated up, the building was nearly packed to the brim and ready for more. Sum 41 was definitely a crowd favorite and won the award for most cursing in a 30 minute period. Bush came out strong with "The People That We Love," formerly known as "Speed Kills" (damn that Bin-Laden), and busted through "Headful of Ghosts" when the fun really began. During a moving rendition of "Everything Zen," Gavin took some time out to hump his amp (HARD!), and went running through the crowd causing a reaction from the pre-pubescent teen girls I though was strictly reserved for *NSYNC and The Backstreet Boys.
311 was definitely a highlight of the evening as they played some gems from their latest studio sensation From Chaos, but nothing got the joints circulating more than all of our old favs, including "Come Original," "All Mixed Up" and "Down."
Q101ís concept for a separate DJ stage featuring the Crystal Method, who tore up the oneís and twoís between acts, (a first in holiday show history, Iím told) was a great idea and was nearly pulled off without a problem. However, when Blinkís drum tech began doing his sound check during the Crystal Methodís final DJ set, some tempers started flying and the duo decided to treat the crowd to some AC / DC before exiting.
Before Blink-182 came on, we were treated to a surprise performance from none other than Greg Brady (who knows his real name?) who rapped using his own lyrics to Eminemís "The Real Slim Shady" and ran around the stage yelling "all the real Greg Bradyís please stand up" (I swear to god).
Blink-182 was the evenings final performance and from the minute they said "I came to fuck your mother in the ass" everyone knew this would be special. Blink tore through "Happy Holidays, You Bastard," "Rock Show," and "Reckless Abandon" amongst others, but none was more entertaining than Mark and Tomís between song banter. Tom told everyone it was his birthday. Mark told us all that he had his balls looked at and they are OK and, we all thought they were funny.
The evening was a treat and Q101 really put together a great mixture of fun, excitement, and pissed off musicians.
Source: Matt DuFour (email@example.com)