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Motion City gets Town crowd moving

Never have so many pairs of skinny jeans and black Chuck Taylor sneakers accumulated in one space. Minnesota indie-rock heroes, Motion City Soundtrack came to a packed Town Ballroom on Saturday to promote their latest effort, "Even If It Kills Me," and brought along openers Metro Station, Anberlin and Mae.
Metro Station, from Hollywood, Calif., put their electro/ rock beats and cutesy lyrics to good use to get the crowd hyped up and ready for an excellent time. Metro's front man spent a rather long time fixing his hair between songs, but altogether the performance was enjoyable and danceable with songs like "Kelsey" and "Seventeen Forever."

Anberlin, of Orlando, Fla., was easily the best-received opener. The crowd flowed (and shoved) their way to the front to hear favorites such as "Adelaide" and "Godspeed." While I must admit I am not an avid Anberlin fan, their performance was energetic, and they did a great job getting people moving and excited. So excited that the enthusiastic crowd began to open up into several sweaty, mosh/thrash pits.
Anberlin finished the set and the crowd waited through a rather long setup (perhaps because of the noticeable sound issues) for Virginia-based Mae to take the stage. Mae was musically the best opener, playing new songs such as "Brink of Disaster" and "Sometimes I Can't Make It on My Own" along with well-known older ones. Mae, which has a very '90s alternative sound, put on a spectacular performance. Singer-guitarist Dave Elkins' fantastic voice and musical talent, along with the rest of the band, made them the most skilled openers that night.

Finally after what seemed like a lifetime of equipment and mic checks, the lights dimmed. And as the outline of wild hair upon the head of singer-guitarist Justin Pierre appeared on stage, the screaming began. Incredible is the only word to describe Motion City's show. Every member had something to offer. Pierre's voice is unexpected but fully suits the band's sound, and moogist Jesse Johnson is quite acrobatic and creates a scene to be seen. The band played numerous songs; no one album received more play than another. Crowd favorites were certainly some of the older ones like "Capital H" and "My Favorite Accident." Front man Pierre's clever banter and allusions to his own "lameness" made the show seem more intimate than the usual "We love you Buffalo, etc, etc." The band flowed through what seemed, for passionate fans, much too short. After a chant of "one more song...," the band came out again, staying not for a double, but a triple encore ending with the band's anthem "The Future Freaks Me Out" and a humorous situation with the venue's large disco ball.

Caitlin Manley is a junior at Immaculata

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