July 23, 2008
The Paradise – Boston, MA
Reviewed by: Sally Feller
The stage is empty and the crowd is restlessly waiting for entertainment, leaning against the bar, the wisest snatching a prime spot right in front of the stage and holding it with the enthusiasm of a kid in line to see Mickey Mouse. I figure it’s the perfect time to use the restroom. I return to the club and feel like I walked into the wrong theater at the movies. Surely there couldn’t be this much energy and insanity only five minutes into the show.
I can confidently say that The Subways know how to work a crowd. They’re those kids you wanted to party with in college, but you knew you’d be paying for it later, possibly while sitting in a jail cell. The Subways hail from England and bring a retro punk sound across the pond. I went to the club knowing only their song “Rock and Roll Queen,” which I’m not entirely sure where I heard for the first time. Apparently it was on an episode of “The O.C.” (thanks, Wikipedia. Which, can’t be the source as I never watched it) and they performed it on Letterman (which is a more likely candidate, but only slightly so). Regardless of where I heard it, I knew it well enough to sing along and fake fan-girl-dom. And, man, were there fans.
The crowd was ridiculous. There was manic jumping, beer sloshing, and general rock mayhem. The Subways seemed to eat it up, feed off of it, and spit it back out at us—prompting Billy Lunn, the lead singer, to jump off stage into the crowd and nearly cause the girl in front of me into having some sort of heart attack. Overall, the crowd was relatively small, but incredibly enthusiastic and loyal. Most knew all of the words and screamed along with Billy and bass/singer/adorable girl, Charlotte Cooper. I was clearly in the minority by only knowing “Rock and Roll Queen.” I highly suggest all of you check them out and familiarize yourself because you’ll be wanting to see them when they come to your town—trust me. Just take a nap and a multivitamin first; you’ll need the energy.