Though appropriate venues might be fewer and farther-between as gentrification rages ever forward throughout the 21st century, the underground punk scene continues to be alive and well at places like O’Brien’s Pub, a quintessential dive bar in the Boston neighborhood of Allston. Case in point: Chicago’s Typesetter brought their US tour through “Obie’s” last Tuesday night for what was a fun, spirited, and — most-importantly– three-band bill which should really be the rule rather than the exception on mid-winter weeknights such as this. But I digress.
Save Ends and Rebuilder provided local support on this particular evening. The former have been staples of the local scene, particularly since the release of their killer 2013 album Cold Hands, Warm Hearts (and, obviously, its 2017 follow-up A Book About Bad Luck). Though they’ve been playing out and about for going on a full decade now, we somehow hadn’t shot them at a show before. Save Ends are a pretty sweet band with killer harmonies and super sharp, heavy-hearted emo punk stylings, which proved a perfect choice to kick off the evening’s festivities. The latter, meanwhile, have obviously been favorites of ours for years, and for good reason. Now appearing as a keyboardless quartet, Rebuilder have been working on a follow-up to 2017’s Songs From The Massachusetts Turnpike for a little while now, and they peppered the middle of their set on this night with a trio of brand-spanking new tracks that were heavy on the early-Blink-style melodies we’ve come to love from them. In an interesting twist, the set’s closing track found drummer Brandon Phillips and guitarist/co-frontman Sal Ellington switched places as Phillips took the reins on a blistering cover of Nirvana’s “Breed” in honor of the eve of what would have been Kurt Cobain’s 52nd birthday.
Typesetter closed things out, and holy hell were they a visceral sonic experience. There’s a lot going on in a Typesetter live show: layers of guitar and keys and samples that’s at times shoegazey and at times all-out bombast. One of the standout live performances I’ve seen in quite some time, particularly when it comes time to try to draw parallels to other band’s for comparison’s sake.
Head below for our full photo rundown, and be sure to catch any of these bands when they’re in your respective neck of the woods. Help keep the scene alive!