Saturday, July 26, 2014

Merge 25 Night 2: Reigning Sound, Superchunk

All photos by Kevin Norris
The Reigning Sound were the penultimate band to hit the Cradle stage on night two of Merge 25 and even though they had a set plagued with technical issues, mostly revolving around Greg Cartwright's guitar, they still rock and rolled.

The band opened with "North Cackalacky Girl" from their new album Shattered. They also played "Never Coming Home" and "Falling Rain" the album. They also played an awesome version of "Stop and Think It Over" from Cartwright's old band Compulsive Gamblers. The band sounded great even if Cartwright did say at one point during the set, "Seriously, we're a pretty good band. Check us out next time."

A finally the second night's headliners Superchunk took to the stage last. They were joined by Jason Narducy on bass who has played with them live since the release of I Hate Music last year. The combined energy of Mac McCaughan and Narducy is almost too much to handle as the each bound around the stage like mad men. Two songs into the set Narducy had blood dripping down the side of his head (you can see it one of the photos below).

After opening with the mid-tempo classic "Kicked In" they played quite a few songs from I Hate Music including "Low F," "Me & You & Jackie Mittoo," "Out of the Sun and "FOH." With that this year's set was based more in the present that the greatest hits set they played five years ago at XX Merge. That doesn't mean a few classics like "Skip Steps 1 & 3," "New Low" and "Slack Motherfucker" didn't make it into the set. They even dug way back to the Chunk days playing their very first single "What Do I."

After a rousing and explicit singalong of "Slack Motherfucker" to end the main set, the band returned to the stage for another deep cut, their cover of the Lou Barlow penned Sebadoh song "Brand New Love." The night ended with the infectious riffage of "Hyper Enough."

Without Superchunk there likely wouldn't be a Merge Records to celebrate so it's always fitting to close one night of the festival and they never disappoint.

Reigning Sound set list
North Cackalacky Girl
Never Coming Home
Your Love Is a Fine Thing
Stop and Think It Over
Starting New
Falling Rain
We Repel Each Other
Once More

Superchunk set list
Kicked In
Water Wings
Iron On
Low F
Me & You & Jackie Mittoo
Skip Steps 1 & 3
Out of the Sun
This Summer
What Do I
Learned To Surf
New Low
Digging For Something
Slack Motherfucker
Brand New Love
Hyper Enough


Anonymous said...

If I remember correctly, Water Wings was the 2nd song in Superchunk’s set.

John said...

Wish I could’ve been there. Looks like a great time.