Say Anything >> made another trip to Tempe this weekend to wrap up this summer's tour with The Front Bottoms. Fresh off last month's release of their Hebrews album, the set list was chocked full of said LP's punk rock pop hymns with a nice sprinkle of rad throwbacks from the past 15 years.
It's difficult to fathom the fact Say Anything has been around for this long. They've been pumping out the jams consistently every year and some in double-disc fashion. Sunday's nearly 2-hour show at the Marquee Theatre on Mill Avenue is a testament to this and their ever-growing catalog of fun.
It was nice to hear so many great songs from Say Anything's best albums, ...Is A Real Boy and their self-titled LP like 'Spider Song' and 'Do Better' to name a few. But the best part was when frontman Max Bemis came back onstage solo for the encore with just his guitar pressed against his sweaty, beer-drenched tank top that probably belonged to his little brother.
First, before performing an acoustic cover of a song by Saves The Day, Max proceeded to inform us that Say Anything and Saves The Day will tour together later this year to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of ...Is A Real Boy. I assume the Bemis and Conley fronted band Two Tongues will be part of the bill too. Super splendid news but one thing was missing from a near-perfect night.
I knew at any minute the rest of the band would come back out to fulfill my long-awaited wish of experiencing 'Alive With The Glory Of Love'. No dice though. This motherfucker keeps coffee talking to the audience and now he's taking requests!!? Damn it. All the youngens up front are in Max's ear yelling shit from Anarchy, My Dear and obviously not what I wanted to hear because they were still shitting their pants in kindergarten when that shit dropped.
But somehow over all the commotion and disorganized chatter I heard an angel's voice in clear sophomore syntax belt out that song that turned me into a Say Anything super fan 10 years ago. As if Max was waiting for her to chime in that entire time, he immediately started strumming those magical chords and began playing the shit out of it.
Although it was an acoustic version and Max even messed up the lyrics in the 2nd verse, I was really happy to hear it. It brought me back to a time when life was carefree and ...Is A Real Boy was the soundtrack. It's amazing what certain songs can do to make me grin from ear to ear. That's just the essence of live music I suppose and I hope that power will never fade away.