The Menzingers                                                      www.themenzingers.com

Warehouse Live Presents

The Menzingers www.themenzingers.com

Jeff Rosenstock, Rozwell Kid

Mar 07 Tue

Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

The Studio at Warehouse Live

$16 ADV, $19 DAY OF

This event is all ages

#MenzTour2017

The Menzingers
The Menzingers
Philadelphia-by-way-of Scranton punk band, The Menzingers are two years removed from Epitaph debut On The Impossible Past. Voted Album of the Year by Absolute Punk and Punk News, the universal acclaim praised the band for its punk roots and quintessentially Midwest romantics. The same accolades have followed The Menzingers since forming as teenagers, followed since Chamberlain Waits (2010) and A Lesson In The Abuse of Information Technology (2007).

No longer housemates in Scranton, PA, the title to The Menzinger's 2014 follow-up, Rented World, mirrors the band's lifestyle since moving to Philly in 2008. The band was renting separate spaces around the city, but maintaining a practice space in North Philly where the majority of the record was written.

Faithfully archetypal Rust Belt punk, Rented World is an album concerned with maintaining a sense of self, the softening of posture, and the burden of harsh realities. In every respect, The Menzingers went into Rented World asking more of themselves. As co-songwriter and guitarist Tom May notes, The Menzingers felt like a different band in 2013.

Rented World remains punk, while fearlessly colliding the snarl of emo with grungy, 90s grit ("Bad Things") and exploring the celestial expanse of post-rock ("Transient Love"). It's slightly new territory for a band coping with their mid-twenties, and whether you've been there or you're on the way there, it's important to note a maturation that comes with the milestone.

"When you're 15 you view music and the music industry a certain way," May said. "But by the time you're 25 you have a different view. Not that it's good or bad, but getting older itself has changed the music."

While the previous two records live in the trademark angst of Chicago producer Matt Allison (Alkaline Trio and Lawrence Arms) and his Atlas Studio sound, Menzingers kept it Philly-local for Rented World, enlisting Jonathan Low, whose distinctively rich Americana resonates through the careers of The War On Drugs, Sharon Van Etten, Kurt Vile, and The National.

The band as a whole recognized shifts in their craft, shifts they knew would best be handled by Low at Miner Street Recordings. "We wanted to go to somebody who wasn't used to recording punk records," Tom May said. "Though it wasn't in a pretentious way, like we wanted to become an indie rock band."

With that in mind, album opener "I Don't Wanna Be An Asshole Anymore" is not just a declaration to be better to that special someone, but a bold recognition that permeates the record on into "Nothing Feels Good Anymore". Shaking oneself out of ruts, still life stagnancy, and the same damn party every weekend informs two of Rented World's most anthemic offerings.

While the front end of Rented World mostly focus on the complications of friendships and relationships, the latter songs progress towards the abstract. "The Talk" kicks the surgeon general's number one killer out the front door ("I want my life back / you turned my chest black / I don't owe you anything"), while "Sentimental Physics" addresses with the impossibility of compromise in the science vs. religion battle, "you can come find me / when you feel lost in a bidding war".

On "In Remission" Barnett's insecurities manifest as "I hate how I always get nervous every time I try to speak / in front of a big crowd / a pretty girl / or the police", meaning The Menzingers didn't write the answers into Rented World. The record admits to an in medias res that comes with one's late 20s, old enough to know better, but still seeking greater wisdom.

Things start to feel a little more serious," Tom May said. "When we were younger we wrote fiery songs because at that age it's your world view. Things feel wrong and you want to say how wrong it is. Now, I look at the world with a view of 'well, I'm not right all the time'."
Jeff Rosenstock
Jeff Rosenstock
7/23/2016
11:37 PM


It's almost midnight on a Saturday in the summer, and I live in New York City. I'm still in my 30s and I don't have to get up early tomorrow. By anyone's standards, I should be heading out for the night; dancing, drinking, meeting up with old friends, making new friends, making mistakes, and feeling young in a city that allows you to remain young despite your age growing higher. I should be out there living.


Instead, I just put a load of laundry in the machine in my building's basement. I'm wearing a pair of green shorts and I feel like an asshole in them. I have knobby knees and shorts don't look good on me. I am wearing a light green t­shirt and the whole outfit makes me vaguely feel like a middle­ aged man dressed up for his first day of kindergarten. I am going nowhere tonight, and I suspect this may apply in the long term as well.


This seems like the perfect time to write about Jeff Rosenstock.


Because no one I've ever met creates art that encapsulates this state of mind more than Jeff. It's music that's catchier than any other music, music you can scream along to in a joyous frenzy. But simultaneously, if you really listen to the lyrics you're shouting, they can speak to a loneliness and desperation so profound it's soul crushing. I've lost myself in joy to Jeff's songs and I've sat alone depressed to Jeff's songs, and I've felt both those things to the same song, sometimes on back to back listens.


Nobody can take the exhilaration and possibilities of life and balance them with the depression of a laundry room on a Saturday night like Jeff Rosenstock. His music can be like a funeral taking place inside a bouncy house, or like a kids' birthday party taking place inside a morgue. I say that with the utmost sincerity and the intent to offer only the highest of praise.


If you're reading this, you probably know the legend of Jeff Rosenstock by now. The Arrogant Sons of Bitches had Long Island's attention, and then mutated into Bomb the Music Industry, a collection of musicians that were among the first to just give their music away, that spray painted t­shirts for fans, that did everything in a way that was financially ill­advised and built a cult unlike any other in the process. Sometimes their shows had a dozen musicians on stage, sometimes it was Jeff and an ipod. No matter what, there was always one thing that remained the same – this
band had as much integrity as Fugazi with none of the pretension but with all the emotion but with a lot more fun and also I have to reiterate none of the pretension. To me it seems like Bomb was like Fugazi if the members of Fugazi had been willing to let down their guards and laugh at fart jokes. Again, this is meant as high praise. I really like Fugazi and am not trying to talk shit, it's just an apt metaphor.


When Bomb ended, Jeff was left standing in a lonely spotlight and we all wondered if he'd be ok. Instead of even giving us time to find out, he put out We Cool? and showed us all what growing up looks like. Growing up fucking sucks, but it's not for melodramatic reasons. It sucks because your joints start hurting and you know you probably aren't gonna get some of the things done that you've always promised yourself you're gonna get done and you still have a lot of guilt about dumb shit you pulled when you were like 19. We Cool? showed us that Jeff Rosenstock's version of growing up wasn't going to betray Bomb or its fans or the things people loved about them, it was going to put a magnifying glass on his own impulses and insecurities as an individual in a way that was both shockingly frank and impossibly catchy.


Jeff's music, if you ask me, is for people who really and truly feel like they could change the world, if only they could muster up the strength to leave the fucking house. It's for people who get into group situations and have every instinct inside their heads scream that the world is a fucked up and terrifying place and they should crumble up into a corner and wait to die, but who instead dance like idiots because what the fuck else is there to do? It's music that makes me feel like maybe, just maybe, if I do things the right way I can help make the world a better place, while co­existing with the knowledge that I don't fucking matter and there's no reason not to give up, except maybe I shouldn't because what if deep down people are actually beautiful, giving, and kind?


It's music that makes me lose myself like I used to when I was 13 and first discovered the joy of punk rock, but it's also music that makes me think way too fucking hard about why the world is how it is and if I might be someone with enough heart to throw a few punches in the effort to make shit just a tiny bit better for others for one fucking second of one fucking day.


It's simple punk rock. It's also complicated and beautiful and working class and perfect.


Is the above a little cheesy? Sure. But I think it's true and I think it's all worth saying. Because having become friends with Jeff over the past few years, I can say the following with great certainty – he actually is what he says he is. And because of that, all the above applies. His integrity is untouchable. We all need to take a second and appreciate how much time this guy has wasted finding all ages venues. How much money he has passed on to retain his credibility as an artist. If other artists – myself chief among them – conducted themselves with an ounce of the integrity Jeff approaches all areas of art and life with, the world would be a better place.


I know this might sound silly to people who don't get it – they might say "It's just punk rock, calm down." – but fuck those people, we all know Jeff is a musical genius. If he wanted to go ghost write songs for Taylor Mars and Bruno Swift, I bet he could make millions of dollars doing so. Music is easy for him. He could write empty songs and hand them off to hollow artists and we all know he'd kill it and he wouldn't have to deal with shaking down shady promoters for a few hundred bucks or driving overnight to get to the next venue or stressing about paying bills or any of it. He continues to not do any of that easy shit and that's because he's not bullshitting about doing things not just the right way, but in a way that's more idealistic than reality actually allows for. He does that for us.


The guy is a genius poet while simultaneously being the definition of a fucking goon from Long​ Island. There is nothing not to love. The album you are about to listen to, WORRY., only furthers and exceeds the myth of Jeff Rosenstock, he who is mythical for being the most normal dude from a boring place any of us have ever met; mythical for sticking to his guns when all logic points in the other direction; mythical for writing melodies that stick in our brains and lyrics that rip our guts out; mythical most of all for being not mythical at all. He's just Jeff. It's not that complicated. But in a world where everything is driven by branding and image and hidden agendas, being not that complicated makes him perhaps the most complicated artist I know.


Enjoy this album. Enjoy it as a whole. The second half is going to blow your mind with its ambitiousness – in my opinion the second half of this album will be viewed over time as a triumph and high water mark of a cool ass career. And the singles – "Wave Goodnight to Me" ​is untouchable. "Blast Damage Days" will make you feel ok about the fact that the world seems to be built on a foundation of quicksand.


And when you're done listening, don't forget – you probably can't change the world, but you're kind of a dick if you don't at least try. Jeff's been falling on the sword for the rest of us for years and it's on all of us to at least go down swinging.

Sincerely,
Chris Gethard
PS – John DeDomenici ain't bad either.
Rozwell Kid
Rozwell Kid
There's a certain science when it comes to writing music that can evoke a sing-it-loud response from more than a few subsets of people, and Rozwell Kid might as well have their PhD. The West Virginian quartet has been proudly playing dials-to-ten indie alt-rock since 2011's matter-of-factly titled The Rozwell Kid LP. Their new LP Too Shabby shows off Rozwell Kid's progression as musicians that haven't lost any of their quirky charm...or volume.

Too Shabby was engineered by Justin Francis at Ronnie's Place in Nashville in early 2014. By the time its 10 songs have concluded, it's obvious that Rozwell Kid have sharpened from their last release – an EP entitled Dreamboats – while somehow getting louder. With lyrics like those in the record's opener, Kangaroo Pocket, ("Simpsons season 3 and a thing of hummus / This is all I need / I'm like super low maintenance") Rozwell Kid find a paradoxical marriage between originality and familiarity. Too Shabby is proof that Jordan Hudkins, Adam L. Meisterhans, Devin Donnelly and Sean Hallock have emerged as a more cohesive, brave, and intelligent unit.

It's undeniable that Too Shabby will draw comparisons to any pre-millenia Weezer record. It's as inevitable as Rozwell Kid is loud. It's more than that, though. Too Shabby is fun, infectious, kinetic, and its unmatched in that. With songs like Weirdo and Birthday Sombrero, Too Shabby has what it takes to be to 2034 what The Blue Album is to 2014. As for right now? Turn it up.
Venue Information:
The Studio at Warehouse Live
813 Saint Emanuel Street
Houston, TX, 77003