The Swaggerin Growlers, Have Nots, Star Fucking Hipsters - 12.12.09 - Middle East Up

 

I caught my first punk show of the winter season this Saturday at the Middle East upstairs at one in the afternoon. Who knew you could do that? I couldn’t remember a show I’d ever been to that had started before 7 PM. Except for the time I saw Raffi, live (incidentally, one of the better performances I’ve ever seen. Even if it was only because I was a four-year-old with a funnel cake watching a Unibomber-lookalike play three chords).

The first act of the night was a Boston five-person folk-punk outfit The Swaggerin’ Growlers. The SGs came out with some real elephant-crushing energy that hardly relented during the course of their set and it wasn’t just one member of the group holding it all up. Whether it was lead vocalist Johnny Swagger contorting his body into some mean Hendrix-style lean-backs (which I’ve never, ever seen someone do at a punk show) or Fiddler/Tin Whistler/Accordionist Annie Growler getting mean on her tin whistle or even just the between-song banter, you could definitely tell that the SGs were there to have some goddamn fun up on that stage. Their fast folk-punk tunes in 4/4 time (with the exception of a 3/4 musical break where the lead singer shouted “WALTZ TIME!!!”), kept the crowd swinging and moshing through most of their set.

--Read the whole review by Dan Schneider HERE