As the band made their way down the spiral staircase, one of many unique aspects of the Chicago venue, they were met with an explosion of cheers as they unleashed the opening notes of Morning Report‘s opening track “Drake’s Dad.”
I caught Arkells earlier this year when they opened for Dreamers at the same venue. I was shocked by their ability to draw an audience-many had driven all the way from Hamilton, Ontario to see them play. After witnessing their set for myself, I wasn’t shocked to walk into a packed house. Especially since Morning Report is such a solid record, a definite step up from their earlier releases, and one of the highlights in what has been a very good year for music.
Max Kerman knows how to play to the fans, and he did so again on this night as the band flew through nearly 20 songs. The focus was mainly on their most recent albums, Morning Report and 2014’s High Noon. They did reach back to 2008’s Jackson Square and 2011’s Michigan Left couple times, giving longtime admirers a nice treat.
Setlist: Drake’s Dad, Come To Light, Hung Up, Savannah, Passenger Seat, My Heart’s Always Yours, Never Thought That This Would Happen, 11:11, And Then Some, Oh The Boss Is Comin’, Pullin’ Punches, Michigan Left, Private School, Cynical Bastards, A Little Rain (A Song For Pete)
Encore: Whistleblower, Dirty Blonde, Leather Jacket