Hot Snakes, Plague Vendor | Empty Bottle | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader
This is a past event.
When: Sat., Sept. 13, 10 p.m. 2014
Price: sold out
If there’s a church for John Reis worshippers, direct me to the head of the congregation. With his Wipers-loyal guitar tone and sweat-a-flyin’ onstage flair, both delivered with the wink and smile he’s had perfected since his Rocket From the Crypt days, Reis is rock ’n’ roll personified. And the Shirley to his Laverne? Rick Froberg. These two guitarists made their bones in the early 90s with legendary San Diego posthardcore band Drive Like Jehu (who just played a one-off reunion, their first show since 1995), and between 1999 and 2005 they dropped three scorching albums in Hot Snakes (Automatic Midnight, Suicide Invoice, and Audit in Progress). For a band this good, though, three albums isn’t nearly enough. Reis and Froberg have since flourished fronting the Night Marchers and Obits, respectively, but their days in Hot Snakes hit right when they were humming as songwriters. They borrowed the biggest pluses from Drive Like Jehu’s nine-minute epics—Froberg’s sneering vocals, Reis’s complex-but-catchy riffage, tons of busy, wiry drumming—and packed them into high-and-tight punk songs. These short, focused tracks basically consist of just the best parts. Hot Snakes have been reuniting on and off since 2010, and haven’t lost an ounce of showmanship since first splitting nearly a decade ago. This is a Riot Fest afterparty. —Kevin Warwick

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