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Saturday January 13 2018   <<<<< afternoon show
 1:00PM doors -- music at 2:00PM
$22 in advance / $24 at the door
 Punk Rock
 garage rock proto-punk

Blake Schwarzenbach
Chris Bauermeister
Adam Pfahler
-from LA/SF/NY

-Independently minded and adhering to the old-school D.I.Y. punk mentality, West Coast punk-pop trio Jawbreaker's street-smart -- yet poetic -- lyrics, spirited musicality, and marathon live shows put them a cut above contemporaries like Green Day and blink-182. After a series of EPs and singles, guitarist/singer Blake Schwarzenbach, bassist Chris Bauermeister, and drummer Adam Pfahler released the band's debut album, Unfun, in 1989. Independent label San Francisco Tupelo/Communion signed the group the following year, releasing Bivouac in 1991 and their breakthrough record, 24 Hour Revenge Therapy, in 1993.

As 1995 saw the first in a three-record deal with DGC, fans were split over the band's newfound success and move to a major label. But Jawbreaker were undeterred, releasing the influential Dear You, a powerhouse collection of punk, grunge, and emo that paved the way for groups like Jimmy Eat World and Dashboard Confessional.

It’s hard not to build up a reunion of this gravity. Jawbreaker spent 21 years in the shadows after a fistfight on tour in 1996 brought the band to an immediate end. Of course, Blake Schwarzenbach, Adam Pfahler, and Chris Bauermeister went on to pursue other projects — the most famous of which, Jets To Brazil, only lasted six years — and weren’t as unreachable as other defunct acts. But the terms on which they ended suggested an irreparable split. Schwarzenbach was “broken” and didn’t think that feeling would change anytime soon. Fans resigned themselves to the fact that Jawbreaker would never reunite, and the chance to see them live had long since passed.

We live in an era of expected reunions; they’re an opportunity for bands of any size to capitalize on lingering fandom, monetized nostalgia, and digitally archived FOMO. The sheer influx of recent reunions inevitably lowers our expectations. For every authentic return (Slowdive, A Tribe Called Quest, Sleater-Kinney), there’s twice the number of what some perceive as being half-hearted cash-ins (At The Drive-In, Blink-182, LCD Soundsystem). But for punk acts, it’s even harder to replicate their peak. Lyrics and instrumentation are secondary to the emotions that prompted a lot of punk acts to form a band; it’s why so many listeners grow out of their punk phase, or why re-listening to an album feels like viewing a mindset they no longer inhabit, a section of their youth they’ve since grown out of. So much of punk fandom relies on the live experience — it’s music that’s tied to a feeling, and when decades pass, replicating that feeling is essentially impossible. Yet somehow, Jawbreaker exceeded that.

Andy: Guitar
Cyrus: Bass
Jim: Drums
Omen: Guitar
-from Oakland, CA
- Driving Oakland Pubpunk with ex-Black Fork, The Pattern, St. James Infirmary