Thank you for playin’ the way you play
The Descendants are on of my favorite bands and I credit them with getting me into punk rock. I spent the summer of 1996 training and swimming at Niles Ice Arena in Niles, IL. One of my first days there, one of the guys put on some music during warm up. It was The Descendants’ “Everything Sux” and I was like “Wha-what? Punk can me hard and fast and melodic and sweet? Who knew?” Then I found out that Milo had a Ph.D. in Bio-chemistry, which, as the child of two Ph.D.s and a big nerd myself, made me fall ever harder in love.
That next summer those same guys took me to the second ever Warped Tour and my first punk rock show … and possibly show ever, but I can’t really remember. During the Descendants set, I crowd surfed for the first time … because, well, I was young and naive and weighed a lot less. I had one of those trendy wallets with a chain attached to my shorts and someone yanked it off while I was up above the crowd. Honestly, that has sort of clouded my memory of the show.
Fast forward to a few weekends ago, when I went to see Motion City Soundtrack play all four of their albums in order (by the by: Amazing!). As I was walking into Irving Plaza, I glanced at the concert listing and saw to my shock The Descendants were playing in New York soon. I immediately called Mr. Bzzz and told him to get tickets now! The show was, of course, sold out so he had to resort to ticket scalpers, or, ahem, StubHub. Yep, we paid $100 per ticket. And yes, it was totally worth it!
As we were leaving our apartment, Mr. Bzzz tells me that he hopes they play “When I get old” … because now they actually ARE old. Hardy har har. He has a point though – 35 vs. 50 is a big difference. And frankly, you could tell. Milo has salt and pepper hair that kind of reminds me of Henry Rollins and he was wearing Dad jeans.
Regardless, the show was AMAZING!! My neck hurts from craning to see. Milo’s voice is much better recorded than live — I want to blame it on his not touring that much, but the truth is that it’s not that good on any of the other live albums either. Nonetheless, I had an amazing time and can die complete.
This is what they played:
- Rotting out
- Silly girl
- I wanna be a bear
- Sour Grapes
- I’m the one
- I don’t wanna grow up
- I like food
- All-o-gistics – this is a lot less funny when they are 50 and not 25. I went to the bathroom and got a shirt during this. Unfortunately, I then missed …
- Everything sux
- Clean Sheets
- Nothing with you
- When I get old
- Suburban home – this is my ring tone for my mom!
- Get the time
- Coffee mug
- I’m not a loser – As soon as they started playing this, I thought, “What are they going to do about the homophobic rants in this song??” What did they do: mostly, Milo just didn’t sing it and ended with “fucking DISCO.” Kinda hilarious.
Listen to the whole set list on Spotify.
Did you know you’re why I go and waste my time at a rock ‘n’ roll show? Let me know what I don’t know. Make me feel strong, make me feel strong, feel like nothing’s wrong.
I won’t say your name, but you know who you are. I’ll never be the same again – now, no way. Thank you for playin’ the way you play.