As I walked the beautiful streets of Chicago, I could feel the buzz and beat rolling off the crowds crawling across the city. There was a flock of us heading to the Taste of Chaos through the museum campus walkways, each of us meandering along the park from different parts of town.
I passed the entry gate after a pit stop at the box office, making my way toward the stage; a commanding, booming pedestal among a see of faces. This was my first time at the Taste, and I could already see the beginnings of a fleeting emo-revival before my eyes.
The Early November was the first to perform on stage. They played with incessant skill and passion, while intimate at times. Familiar, but overall diverse. Their set seemed so short, and I was left wanting more. When they played “Baby Blue” off of The Room’s Too Cold, fans aggressively pushed to the front, singing each line, soaring and effortless.
Saosin was up next. I expected nothing short of spastic, relentless energy, and they didn't disappoint in the least bit. Anthony Green was quite difficult to keep up with, running from each end of the stage, roaring into the mic, and shredding up every corner of the stage. It’s glorious, and I love Saosin’s consistency. They played a few songs off their new album Along The Shadow, and it was better then I could have imagined.
I must be honest though... I was most looking forward to Taking Back Sunday. I shot them at Riot Fest this past September and the caliber of their shows is astounding. They opened with “Cute Without The E,” a staple song of the early 2000s pop punk scene. It was infectious, unruly, and rapid, with people belting out every word. TBS followed it with a few other favorites, two new songs, and plenty of personal tidbits between performances. Their set was over in what felt like no time, and I’m already planning out the next time I can try to catch them again.
The evening finishes off with Dashboard Confessional. I remember when “Again I Go Unnoticed” came out in 2000. When they played their first few chords, it became difficult to hear the words atop the roar of the crowd. It’s sobering, and soulful.
The Taste of Chaos spans across multiple dates in the US, finishing in San Bernardino, CA on July 16th. The Starting Line, Senses Fail, Quicksand, The Get Up Kids, and more will join for a prevailing final show.