March 29th, 2010:
The Casualties 20th Anniversary party at Santos Party House in downtown NYC did not disappoint. By the time doors opened a little after 6pm there was a line of punks and fans down the block.
And true to the venue’s name, this felt more like a party, a celebration, a birthday than just a concert by some great punk bands.
The evening started off with Guilt Trip, which played to a mostly full venue as people had arrived early.The punks didn’t need time to get going either, they circle pit was active almost from the get go.
By the time Violent Society took the stage the venue was packed and the excitement was building to a crescendo.
When the Unseen from Boston hit the stage, it was all out chaos. I’d never seen them live, but I’m glad I did. They didn’t let some equipment problems get in the way with delivering the audience a kick ass set, and the crowd was very patient while they fixed their gear.
When the Casualties hit the stage, opening with “Carry On The Flag” and “We Are All We Have”, the crowd was going nuts. The Casualties played a marathon set, incorporating lots of their older stuff from their 20 year repetoir to a very appreciative crowd.
The crowd was mixed as any NYC concert is, with punks of all shades and stripes, Asians, Latinos, Black, white, the whole damn rainbow as only you can find in New York City, the greatest punk city on the planet.It was also fairly mixed (for a punk show) with some females (some quite hot) tearing up the pit. There were punks of all ages, as you might expect for a band that’s been around for 20 years.
I even spotted a young fan, the next generation of punks with his mom, both big Casualties fans and both sitting right up front at the stage.
The band was pumped for this show you could tell. These were their most hardcore of their hardcore fans, the officers of the Casualties Army if you will and they wanted to give them all they could.
Midway through the set, lead singer Jorge gave up the mic over to the crowd for a Ramones cover, while he changed shirts. The band ended the set with “Unknown Soldier” before the crowd demanded an encore and they came out for a couple more songs before everyone hit the exits to a rainy, cold NYC night.
I really love NYC and the punks of NYC, a really good bunch. I also love The Unseen and the Casualties, two really good and really down to earth punk bands who play for all their worth for their largely working class fans. I like everything but the NYC rain in March, which was the only thing that kept it from being a perfect night.
You can check out more pics from the evening at our flikr page be sure to tune in later in the week for videos from the evening.