HOBOKEN, NJ—The smell of musty people and beer has always been a sign of a good night, and that is what June 4 was. The show was advertised to sell out, and I’m pretty sure it came close. By the time Weston came on, there was a sea of people enjoying themselves. A variety of age groups in attendance, there even was a little girl who couldn’t have been older than 10 handing out Weston cassettes. I heard many people praise the fact that there were cassettes being handed out instead of CDs.
Starting off the night was Communication Redlight. Normally I won’t look up a band I’ve never heard of if I’m planning to see them live. This time, I actually did some research on the five-piece punk band. I really got into their music even before I saw them, so I had to name my price and buy their demo off of Bandcamp. And they didn’t let me down with their live show. Their sound brought me back to what I consider my “glory” days, and shortly after the first song began I found myself emerged in the attitude and spunk this band put into their performance.
Next up was Morning…, an indie/alternative band who are no strangers to the stage at Maxwell‘s. The five-piece released their latest EP, The Greatest Feeling In The World, at the venue last August. Their set included “The Eastern Lean,” “MIDItropolis” and “Settlers” as well as some older fan favorites such as “The Red Room,” “Fight Off Your Demons,” “Move Your Head” and a new version of “Anywhere.” “The Eastern Lean” was my favorite song from their set. The track is catchy and it‘s different from what the band has recently put out. “MIDItropolis” too has a darker feel and chilling vocals provided by both vocalists/guitarists Darryl Norrell and Ben Oliveira. The talent that Norrell, Oliveira, guitarist Albert Chua, bassist Kieran Wardle and drummer George Serr possesses never ceases to amaze me.
Following Morning…, Brian Carley the singer of Penfold, jumped on stage with an acoustic guitar in hand ready to woo the crowd. His solo project, The Waltz, is still full of strong lyrics like his other band but just with the instrumentals toned down. The audience crowded around the stage and really got into Carley’s set. I was impressed with how well his folky sound wound up fitting in through his energy and emotion. His songs were pretty relatable if you took them in, and his melodies were superb.
And finally, Weston was set to perform for a full 90 minutes. This was the band’s first tour/performance in over a year, and even though they said that they don’t practice, it sure seems like they do. The crowd was packed in tightly and I landed myself way in the back by the merch area. I don’t think that there was one person in the crowd who wasn’t singing along to their favorite Weston songs, and at one point I think I saw a one man mosh-pit start up. In between tuning, the crowd began to shout out what they wanted to hear, which had the guy next to me yelling as loud as possible only to have his request turned down. Luckily, I was able to hear one of my favorite songs, “New Shirt,” without having to exert much energy. It’s always a treat when these guys come around. From the people to the music, when you’re going to see Weston, you’re bound to have a good time.