Entering the Charlotte’s Metro Credit Union Amphitheater (formerly Uptown Music Factory) Tuesday night, speakers blared in my ears as the sounds shook my mind and vibrated into every thought I was having. The North Carolina stop of The Taste of Chaos Tour commenced in 90-degree temperatures, an early 2000’s nostalgia trip as co-headliners Taking Back Sunday stampeded in to start the night off.
The local alternative rockers fronted by Adam Lazzarra, had opened with the initial chords of my personal favorite/life describing song, “What’s It Feel Like To Be A Ghost?” from 2006’s Louder Now album. As much preacher as performer, Lazzarra spoke to his crowd as if they were his congregation, “I understand a lot of you probably came out this evening for nostalgia purposes. That means we’ve been doing this together, we’ve grown up together! I was there when you smoked cigarettes out behind your high school. I was there when you got your driver’s license and all that to say here I am in Charlotte, North Carolina. I’m still here today!” At one point, the lead guitarist strung together a mean collection of notes that bridged into a solo Lazarra performance of “This Photograph Is Proof (I Know You Know)” from the 2002 Tobey Maguire Spider-Man movie soundtrack. Another comic book movie appearance came in the form of “Error Operator” which TBS opted for the “F 4 Edit” of the song from the 2005 film Fantastic Four. This being my first time having seen them perform live, my 00’s media geek self was sufficiently catered to and their coda of “MakeDamnSure” (also off of Louder Now) lived up to its namesake of making damn sure I enjoyed it.
As Taking Back Sunday bowed out, frontrunners Dashboard Confessional arrived on stage as the crowd was greeted by lead singer, emo crooner Chris Carrabba. Having previously seen them perform last year in Raleigh, I was expecting another great repeat performance. The band struck early gold with the audience by leading with the crossover hit song “Vindicated” from the Spider-Man 2 movie soundtrack (this was the night for comic book movie themes). To add the performance, a killer light show created a blinding visualization of multi-colored hues that were enveloped in a smoky haze and was further complimented by a striking back drop screen. Amidst the stunning technical displays, a new sight of moving bodies around me pulsated to the instrumentals. Speaking with concert attendee Jacob Feldkamp, he mentioned how listening to it took him back to his high school years (I started having flashbacks myself to 2004 when the aforementioned film and single were both released) and how we can all relate to the lyrics at some point in our lives. Just as poignant to me was their closing trifecta of songs: a cover of Coldplay’s “Fix You”, repeat television show placement song “Stolen” (from their 2006’s Dusk & Summer), and their signature “Hands Down” from the 2001 acoustic So Impossible EP. This song has a special place in my heart as I first heard it in the background of a 2003 promo for the debuting teen drama “One Tree Hill”, with both the show and band becoming instant favorites of mine. Everyone in attendance, who grew up as a teen or college student in the 2000’s, were treated to a soundtrack 2 of the defining bands of that time period. If I were asked to give a singular opinion of this show overall, I would say I was overstimulated by every moment significantly.
The Taste of Chaos tour continues on through the rest of July. For remaining dates, tickets and show information, go to http://www.tasteofchaos.com/
For more information on Taking Back Sunday, go to http://www.takingbacksunday.com/
For more information on Dashboard Confessional, go to http://dashboardconfessional.shop.ticketstoday.com/
Lamarr Fowlkes is a Raleigh/Asheville based contributing writer for Triangle Arts and Entertainment and Promotions Assistant at LiveNation Entertainment. A former UNC Tar Heel and UNC Asheville Bulldog, descendant of Welsh and Nigerian ancestry, and noted hockey enthusiast, Lamarr will continue to provide art and entertainment coverage for the Triangle area whilst simultaneously expanding his reach to the remainder of the Carolinas. To read more of Lamarr’s posts for Triangle Arts and Entertainment, click http://triangleartsandentertainment.org/author/lamarr-fowlkes