Twenty years of nothing is a long time. There’s so much going on in that time frame that it’s hard to comprehend everything that could happen in that time frame. Heck, I was up late with my college friends listening Little shredded pill and play Diablo 2 twenty years ago. Now I work a day job and yearn for those days, staying up late killing zombies and ghouls.
Twenty years ago was also around the time modern rock royalty was forming across the country. groups like rise up against, the usedand The senses fail were just getting started and were about to carve out their place in the immense wall of rock and roll history. All that time spent honing their craft and blasting across the country brought them through Oklahoma City on the last night of July 2022. They were ready to play The criterion in Bricktown, and I was excited but curious to see how well a band that’s been around for so long could sell in a venue that size (which is probably the 3rd largest venue in town compared to the zoo amp and Paycom Arena where the OKC Thunder play, so the criterion is quite huge).
Well, to my surprise, these guys had a huge turnout, which made my little 2000s emo heart so happy. It wasn’t just people my age that were there, but younger generations as well, which made me even more excited to see those young people there wanting to see the music that I’ve been raving about. teeth when I was in high school.
The first band to open the night was New Jersey scream legends Senses Fail and they did not disappoint. They played a super catchy set with the lead singer Friend Nielsen swing his mic in the air and rock the crowd with his energy. He wasn’t the only one filling the stage with excitement, but the rest of the group was also getting the crowd excited. They even played classics like “Lady in the Blue Dress” and “Buried a Lie.” It felt like I was leaving hot topic in 2005.
Next Step was one of the numbers I’ve been dying to see for 17 years, ever since one of my high school crushes introduced me to their song “Taste of Ink” while driving. Instead of starting with that, The Used started with the lead singer Bert spitting and tearing up the song “Take it Away,” which has to be one of the best concert openers. It was surreal to finally see it live after shouting the lyrics in my car for a decade or more. The crowd also loved and ate.
In addition to these performers at the top of their game, singer Bert did another cool thing; About halfway through his set, he brought up a very young fan on stage and basically celebrated his presence and how innocent and uncorrupted he was, then walked into their 2020 song “Blow Me.” They also opened up a circular pit and ended their set with their classic song “A Box Full Of Sharp Objects”, which I was thrilled to hear.
Finally, it was time for the main act of the night, Rise Against. I love their kind of punk rock with their music that has a message and represents something, which I wish a lot more bands would do these days. This passion is not only felt in the music but it is also something that I felt seeing them live. You can see it with each member of the band also struggling on stage. Another thing that I loved was that they did another circular pit like The Used did earlier that night. I haven’t seen in a circular pit in ages, so I was on top of the world seeing this. Throughout the night they played classics like “Satelite”, “Help Is on the Way” and even finished on “Savior”. I wish they’d played “Swing Life Away”, but it was a high energy set anyway.
You could definitely tell how excited everyone was that this tour was rolling through the city. Hopefully, this won’t be the last time any of these groups grace OKC or any other location in Oklahoma. I know I’ll definitely be at these folks’ next show, and I hope you’ll be the next stop on this tour. You will not regret it !
Rise Against Setlist:
The refugee’s prayer
Help is on the way
ready to fall
Rehabilitation (by work)
I don’t want to be here anymore
Dance for the rain
Audience of a
To give everything