It’s been a wild few decades for Kansas City’s The Get Up Kids, who have always found a loving second home in Australia dating back to the late ’90s and their first tour on the back of fan favourite album ‘Something To Write Home About’.
So it was little surprise to see such a good gathering at The Corner Hotel on a Sunday night (6 October), or that the songs from this record remain the biggest crowd pleasers.
Despite a sudden announcement of the departure of long-time keyboardist James Dewees last month, everything appeared business as usual as frontman Matt Pryor didn’t appear to be at all fazed by the line-up shift. While the touring keyboardist lacked the same super-charged energy of Dewees, there was little lacking to the sound for many fans to care too much.
Ripping through a bunch of newer material from this year’s ‘Problems’ back to 2004’s ‘Guilt Show’ (with ‘Man Of Conviction’ the pick among them), Pryor’s distinctive vocals that helped define the Midwest emo revival were faultless and the stage show was impassioned.
But, love it or not for Pryor, it was the tracks from the 1999 set that struck the strongest chord, from ‘Holiday’ to ‘Red Letter Day’ and Pryor doing a solo version of ‘I’ll Catch You’, with plenty of vocal help from the audience.
Besides a band introduction and a few pleasantries from Pryor, it was mainly down to business for the band, whose energy was infectious.
And it was no surprise that the band finished with ’10 Minutes’ from that seminal second album, played with all the gusto you’d have expected from them back when the record came out.
While at times Pryor looked to be going through the motions with the older tracks, and the band have done much since to be recognised for, ‘Something To Write Home About’ is a record the band will never outrun.
And that’s certainly not a bad thing – as shown by the epic sing-alongs that rang across the crowded Corner main room, from fans who have clearly been onboard for much of the 25-year life-span of the band and look like they won’t be going anywhere soon.