the loud bassoon concert scene

Wire @ Metro, Chicago, USA
14 September 2002

I'm no poseur, I'm just out for a good time. My friend Rob, who saw all the good bands back in the day, emailed me suddenly one day and insisted we should see Wire, one of the original and still most innovative punk rock bands around. Well, alright, says I. Having heard neither hide nor hair of this band, I was still excited, as a show at the Metro is always superfun, and how bad could a band be who has been around for as long as Wire has?

Come to think of it, this was my old-school weirdo punk weekend, as I'd seen the Mekons the night before. Well anyway, the Wire show was definitely too boyfriend-heavy, that is, much too White Male-filled, in terms of audience – the only cuties being obviously attached to their High Fidelity boyfriends. Fortunately there was alcohol to erase the perceived imbalance.

And so Jack and Coke it was all night, certainly helping me through the opening act, Milemarker. When they took the stage I was pretty much laughing at them, thinking, what, did they just figure they'd form a band without learning how to write songs? They had all the ingredients of a now-band, Chicago-circa-2002: postpunk, postrock nonpop with aggressive vocals, synths, guitars, and lots of flailing their hair around. Everything but melody. Of course by my second Jack and Coke I was thinking, "Man, these guys are REALLY good."

Wire fucking rocked, despite being well over 40. Most of the songs were less than two minutes long, and what else can I say – the show just fucking rocked. I bought their new EP, suspicious even in my drunken state that I wouldn't actually want to own it when Sunday morning's sun came up, but for an hour and a half, at least, these guys had me believing they were the best band ever.

Review by Marcus Morelli