Catch 22 rocks Toad’s Place

By on October 23, 2003

On Oct. 12, Toad’s Place in New Haven was not just the place to see the ska band Catch 22. That night, Toad’s Place had also become a hot spot for high school students to be, as I counted only about two people who appeared old enough to drink legally.

The lead singer of Worthless United, the first of four bands to perform that night, even said it looked like a lot of 15-year-old girls were in the audience. After all, the lead singer looked old enough to be the father of most in the crowd. Despite an energetic performance from Worthless United, there was not much of a crowd response.

While the next band, Goodwill, followed up with an equally lively performance, they also failed to generate much energy from the crowd. Between these two bands, Goodwill definitely caught my attention. Worthless United is one of those opening bands which you are most likely to forget as soon as they are done playing. Goodwill showed more potential for a future in the punk music industry.

Boys Night Out, however, performed next and changed the vibe of Toad’s Place. Girls who had been sitting at the bar drinking soda all night suddenly joined the mini-punk rockers in front of the stage filling in the gaps in the crowd that existed for the first half of the show.

One of the mini-punk rockers got so fueled by their performance that he climbed on the stage and then jumped off in an attempt to crowd surf. Unfortunately, since there was not a very big crowd to be carried anywhere, he ended up quickly landing on his feet and everyone ignored him.

While Boys Night Out seemed to invigorate the crowd I found them to be quite ordinary. Nothing about them stood out to me and I quickly forgot about them as my excitement for the headlining band, Catch 22, built.

As Catch 22 started to play, the crowd became more alive than it had been all night. Catch 22’s drummer rocked out while playing on his bright yellow drum set with purple, orange and red dots. The lead guitar player’s facial expression looked like he was having an orgasm.

One of the things that made Catch 22 the unique band of the night was their use of horn instruments. Not only did they rock out with guitars and drums but they had a saxophone and trumpet. Their ska music gave a little change from the more aggressive punk music of the night, and they played like they knew what they were doing and had sung these songs many times before.

Catch 22 performed a variety of songs from all of their CD’s, including their new disc “Dinosaur Sounds,” which is set for release on Nov. 4. Quinnipiac freshman Stefanie Holley, who attended this concert as her first punk rock show said, “Catch 22 was unbelievable and I had so much fun watching them perform.” She insists she will listen to my Catch 22 CD’s now.

Overall, the bands were lively, and gave everyone who attended a taste of a typical punk show. However, nothing memorable happened during the show, unless, of course, you consider the unfortunate lingering image of high school students smoking cigarettes and licking each other’s faces.

While I would have preferred an older audience, Catch 22’s incredible performance made the shuttle ride to Toad’s Place worthwhile.


About Michelle Faust