Photo of Citizen by Harper King / Sick Snaps
Citizen, Oso Oso, Teenage Wrist, and Queen of Jeans rocked a sweet gig on July 18 at the Hawthorne Theatre in Portland, OR.
Queen of Jeans
The night began with Philly band Queen of Jeans. I wasn’t very familiar with them prior to this show, but they put out a solid album earlier this year called Dig Yourself. The experience seeing them live was a bit different than listening to the record, and I think that’s largely due to the way that their sound filled the room, and the way that their instrumentals set the mood. While their guitar parts felt darker, their vocals and harmonies were bright which created an almost eerie contrast. Their time on stage easily solidified them as one of my favorite live bands.
Teenage Wrist put on a fun set. It was my first time seeing and listening to them. They were entertaining to watch because their set was so precision focused, and it was obvious how well they all work together. Earlier this year, they put out their debut album, Chrome Neon Jesus, and I look forward to spending some time with the record and growing more familiar with this band.
Oso Oso has been growing so quickly, and it’s so exciting to see! The first time I saw this band was at the Tardis Room, which is a tiny space in a Doctor Who themed fish and chips shop with Prince Daddy & The Hyena (who also happened to be in Portland again this same night), and now they’re direct support for Citizen. They’re growing a steady following here, and people cheered with excitement when the band would begin playing fan favorites from the yunahon mixtape. Oso Oso is such a fun band to groove along to at shows – never miss a chance to see them live.
Speaking of growth, Citizen has leveled up in venue size here in Portland. After selling out the space FKA the Analog several times over the past couple years, this time they played to an energetic crowd at the Hawthorne. The crowd was pretty quiet and tame during the first three bands, but the second that Citizen started that all changed. There was an endless stream of crowdsurfers, though it was especially rough when they landed on stage this show, and all of the oddly executed stage dives kept making vocalist Mat Kerekes laugh (but don’t worry – everyone was safe). Being at the Hawthorne felt right because the taller stage and higher ceilings allowed everyone to go harder than they could in the past. Citizen primarily played from Youth and As You Please, and also included a couple tunes from Everybody Is Going To Heaven. It was a fun night, and the only thing I wish I could change would be increasing the length of Citizen’s set because I can never get enough of them.