Sum 41 - Chicago, IL

May 18, 2018

“This is my favorite city” Super Whatevr frontman Skyler McKee blurts out before the show starts. The band is known for their deeply personal lyrics and Skyler casually formed a friendly relationship with the crowd before even strumming the first chord. Timid but talented, Super Whatevr definitely found some new fans in this audience with their poetically-inclined dazy rock. They’re a bit off the pop-punk path of the rest of the bill but with powerful lyrics about emotions that are hard to express, they fit right in.

Seaway is an up-and-coming pop-punk group- a little Four Year Strong fun with some Offspring attitude. Clearly growing their stage legs and getting comfortable in front of a larger crowd, they powered through their set jumping all around the stage and hyping the audience through singalongs and huge cheers between songs. Reunion tours tend to attract a mixed age crowd and it would be safe to assume that a lot of the younger fans came out for Seaway just as much as Sum 41.

Sum 41 arrived like the seasoned scene veterans they are. Does This Look Infected? has been the anthemic soundtrack to teenage angst for the last 15 years and everyone was here to celebrate its adolescence. They absolutely tore through their set; two drum solos, some insane shredding from original guitarist Dave “Brownsound” Baksh, and a Black Sabbath medley to round it all out. They switched up the “anniversary album” tour style by mixing the tracklist and keeping fans guessing about what would come next, even throwing an old one or two in there for good measure. They encored with the underrated Walking Disaster and the perpetually crowd-pleasing Fat Lip. Sum 41 holds a unique place in the pop punk ethos by staying true to the genre essentials while pushing the envelope with their metal and hip-hop influences, and this sold out show for a 15 year old album is perfect evidence of their mark on the culture.

By Brandon Phipps