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Punk rockers Against Me! tear it up at The Knitting Factory Reno

Against Me!
Against Me!
Photo by John Tuckness

Against Me! "LIVE" in Concert


On March 23, 2014 punk rockers Against Me! touring on their latest album Transgender Dysphoria Blues hit the stage at the Knitting Factory Concert House in downtown Reno.

Knitting Factory Concert House Reno
Promo Photo

Attendance for this Sunday night show was quite impressive with nearly 500 punkers showing up to get their socks blown off.

Also on the bill were folk rocker Laura Stevenson and American rockers Cheap Girls.

Against Me! is a punk rock band formed in Gainesville, Florida, in 1997 by singer and guitarist Laura Jane Grace. After releasing three studio albums through independent record labels, Against Me! moved to Sire Records for 2007's New Wave, which reached no. 57 on the Billboard 200. Their fifth album, 2010's White Crosses, was their most successful, reaching no. 34. In 2011 the band launched their own record label, Total Treble Music, through which they plan to release future albums.

In 2012 Grace publicly came out as transgender, beginning a transition to living as a woman and dropping the name Tom Gabel.

The band finished recording their sixth studio album, Transgender Dysphoria Blues, during the summer of 2013, and released it on January 21, 2014.

Current members include, Laura Jane Grace-(guitar, lead vocals), James Bowman-(guitar, vocals), Inge Johansson-(bass) and Atom Willard-(drums, percussion).

Having had never seen these guys (and now I guess gal) before, this examiner was very impressed with the high energy and great stage presence that this band has.

From the very first note of the first song, lead singer Grace had everyone there eating out of the palm or her hand. Although Grace still very much looks like a guy, you can see there is some change going on. From what this examiner could tell, nobody even cared, they came to rock and that's what they did. The band put on a fantastic show.

The set lasted around 90 minutes and went just like this, (from the set list on stage)

"F*ckMyLife666", "Cliché Guevara", "New Wave", "Walking Is Still Honest", "Unconditional Love", "I Still Love You Julie", "True Trans Soul Rebel", "Don't Lose Touch", "I Was a Teenage Anarchist", "Turn Those Clapping Hands into Angry Balled Fists", "Pretty Girls" (The Mover), "Transgender Dysphoria Blues", "Miami", "Rapid Decompression", "Dead Friend", "Thrash Unreal", "Black Me Out", "The Ocean", "Sink, Florida, Sink" and three encore songs, "Pints of Guinness Make You Strong", "Drinking With the Jocks" and "We Laugh at Danger" (And Break All the Rules).

Main support for Against Me! was folk and indie singer Laura Stevenson.

Laura Stevenson is an American singer-songwriter based in Long Island, New York, and formerly a keyboard player for the musical collective, Bomb the Music Industry!.

Current members are, Laura Stevenson-(guitar,vocals), Mike Campbell-(bass), Alex Billig-(accordion,trumpet), Peter Naddeo-(guitar) and Dave Garwacke-(drums).

Let me start by saying that Stevenson is way more beautiful in person than any photo that this examiner has ever seen.

She and the band really know how to please their audience with a very distinct sound that this examiner enjoyed very much. Everyone in attendance showed that they were very entertained by the applause they gave after every song. A very impressive set for sure.

Her set lasted 45 minutes and went like this, (also from the set list on stage)

"The Wait", "Triangle", "Runner", "Telluride", "Shine", "Peachy", "Claust", "The Healthy One", "Sink, Swim", "808" and "Master Of Art".

Not only is Stevenson very beautiful to look at, but she and her band put on a very good show, a must see.

Starting the night off were rockers Cheap Girls.

Cheap Girls is an American rock band from Lansing, Michigan currently signed to Xtra Mile Recordings.

The band was formed in 2007 and quickly began recording and touring, releasing their first album Find Me a Drink Home in 2008. Their second album, My Roaring 20's was released in 2009 and their latest album, Giant Orange in 2012.

They have completed tours with The Gaslight Anthem, The Bouncing Souls and now with Against Me! across the US and Europe. Their sound has been compared to The Replacements, Sugar, and early Smoking Popes.

Cheap Girls consists of brothers Ian Graham (bass, lead vocals) and Ben Graham (drums, back-up vocals), with Adam Aymor (guitar).

Their set lasted about 30 minutes and went like this, (again from the set list on stage)

"Slow Nod", "Gone All Summer", "Knock Me", "Hey Hey, I'm Worn Out", "Pure Hate", "No One", "Sleeping Weather" and "Ruby".

These guys really put on a great set, a perfect band to open the show. In this examiners opinion they could have gotten a little more stage time, they were pretty impressive to say the least.

All in all this was a great night of music, every band tore it up.

A great time was had by all.

The Knitting Factory Reno always brings the best shows to Reno, to see what's coming up (click here)

As with all this examiners reviews and feature stories, "The Photos Are What It's All About", so check out the photo slideshow and enjoy the show.

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All photos by, JOHN TUCKNESS


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