Motion City Soundtrack

Motion City Soundtrack w/ All Get Out & Neil Rubenstein• July 16, 2022• The Complex

Reviewed and Photographed by Alisha Gregson

Photo Credit: Alisha Gregson

On Saturday, July 16th, pop-punk band Motion City Soundtrack brought their Commit to This Memory 17th anniversary tour to Salt Lake City. The tour had originally been planned as a 15th anniversary but was postponed due to the pandemic. After an extra 2 years of waiting, the band’s most loyal fans gathered at The Complex, excited and eager to see them perform. 

Neil Rubenstein

I was completely caught off guard when the first opener was announced. The last thing I was expecting was for a comedian to start the night off. I am a big fan of standup comedy, so while I was surprised, I was also thrilled. Comedian Neil Rubenstein from Oklahoma City stepped out to a room full of people ready to be entertained. From the moment he started, he had everyone laughing. His jokes were hilarious, and his delivery was perfect. I don’t want to give any of his routine away. I will say he covered a pretty broad range of topics. Before leaving he mentioned he would be at the merch table selling a few things. Including shirts that were printed on 100% his old t-shirts turned inside out.

I assumed that last part was another joke. But after having a chance to chat with him at the merch table I learned he really was selling t-shirts that were printed on the inside of his old shirts. I enjoyed talking with him for a minute. I can easily say he is just as funny off stage as he was on.

Photo Credit: Alisha Gregson

All Get Out

Photo Credit: Alisha Gregson

Next up was the alternative indie band All Get Out from South Carolina. They seemed genuinely excited to be there performing, and they quickly impressed the crowd. The band’s guitarist Kyle Samuel thanked everyone for being there. Then he joked about a few genre labels the band has been given. “Some have called us “y’allternative”, others have called us “Loud Country”, even some call us “Loud Shitty Country”, and that’s why we’ve started calling our fans “Shitheads”. So, if you’re a “Shithead” make some noise!” The audience erupted into cheers showing approval for the band. Some of their songs had pretty strong Country vibes, while others leaned more toward Rock.

The band played some awesome music to get everyone pumped up. Including several songs from their most recent album Kodak, released just earlier this year. I enjoyed their set and look forward to seeing more from this band in the future.

Motion City Soundtrack

Photo Credit: Alisha Gregson

The energy at the complex was at its peak when Motion City Soundtrack stepped onto the stage. I have gotten used to bands waiting until the end of the night to play their biggest hits, so I was surprised when they started with a few of their most popular songs. First up was “Attractive Today”. I had to laugh when I heard a group of fans at the barricade change the lyrics to be a little more relevant for today.  Instead of “I am also fed up with the common cold,” a few front-row fans referenced Covid instead. Next up was the band’s biggest hit from 2005, “Everything is Alright.” The crowd got really into it as they jumped around and sang every word of the catchy song.

As they started playing their 3rd song “When You’re Around,” I realized they were playing the songs from their Commit To This This Memory in the same order they are on the album. I have heard of bands playing an entire album front to back in concert before, usually just for anniversary tours like this one, but this was the first time I had experienced it. There is something very nostalgic about listening to songs in the same order they are on an album. I remember listening to CDs before iPods were even around, and there was no such thing as a shuffle option.

After playing an album so many times, you knew exactly what was coming next when one song ended. It was often impossible to resist the urge to start singing the next song before it even started. There are a few albums I would love to hear performed live front to back like this, and I think this was a great experience for all the Motion City Soundtrack fans in attendance.

After the first few songs, lead singer Justin Pierre took a moment to tell the crowd how excited they were to finally be on tour again and thanked everyone for showing up. As they played through their set, it was fun to watch how energetic the crowd would get with each song. The crowd got especially loud when they played both “Make out Kids” and “L.G. Fuad”. One of my favorite moments of the night happened when the band started to play “Together We Will Ring In The New Year.” After about 15 seconds into it, Pierre stopped the song and said, “I forgot the chords”. Then with a huge smile on his face, he chuckled and said “We are professional!”.

He told the crowd, “Erase this from your memory,” which got a pretty good laugh. The band then played the song perfectly, correct chords and all. I appreciated their easy-going attitudes and playful sense of humor at that moment.

After singing “Hold Me Down,” the last song from their album, the band waved goodbye and walked off the stage. The crowd cheered and chanted “10 more songs, 10 more songs.” After a minute or 2, the band walked back out onto the stage covered in blue light. This was not the first time I had heard a crowd request a 10-song encore, but it was however the first time I have seen a band actually give their fans a 10-song encore. To be honest, It was less of an encore and more like a 2nd set. MCS started with a new song called “Crooked Ways.” They explained that this song was actually written and recorded 12 years ago, but not released until very recently. They worked their way through more of their old favorites, such as “This Is For Real,” “It Had to Be You,” and “My Favorite Accident.”

Justin Pierre took some more time to talk to the crowd. He started by telling them he loved them and then received lots of love in return. Pierre talked about how much they missed performing live and the energy that is created at concerts. He also took a minute to ask the crowd to give a hand to both Neil Rubenstein, and All Get Out for doing such a wonderful job opening the show. They ended the night with “The Future Freaks Me Out,” and allowed the audience to take over the chorus for them.

Photo Credit: Alisha Gregson

Motion City Soundtrack put everything they had into their performance and did an excellent job entertaining their fans. As I was leaving the venue I heard groups of friends still singing some of the songs they had just heard, while others discussed just how much they loved the concert. It may have been a couple of years later than expected, but I think everyone there was happy that Motion City Soundtrack finally got their anniversary tour. 

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