Christie Front Drive, Denver’s most famous emo band, reunited for two shows this summer (so far) — one in Brooklyn, and the other on Sunday night at the Larimer Lounge. While Christie Front Drive’s Larimer set was short (many fans seemed to feel it was too short) it was packed with the band’s signature and influential style. It was a sonic lambast that came from the space between emo and post-rock, and these boys showed without a doubt that they had a hand in inventing it.
Eric Richter and Jason Begin formed the songs’ guitar-centric foundation as they traded heavy minor chords and melodic, distorted licks while Richter howled in his high-pitched, just-barely-in key vocals. They brought the lounge back to days when indie charts were heavier with distorted, fervent anthems by bands like Sebadoh and Superchunk, and proved that claims of their influence are well founded.
Powerful as the set was, though, it did sound dated. The familiar quiet-loud-louder, and back-to-quiet progressions tended towards formulaic, but it was well received by the not-quite full house.
A sense of nostalgia filled the place as audience members shouted both requests and memories from the band’s early ‘90s tenure. Richter responded with both jocularity and a sense of gratitude, thanking the crowd often and playing a few bits of songs the band — by its own admission — felt they could no longer play. Not that it mattered to the fans.
Joe McCabe is a Denver photographer and a regular contributor to Reverb. Check out his website.