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Riot Fest Chicago 2016 Festival Review: From Worst to Best

on September 19, 2016, 1:00pm
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Too Theatrical For Their Own Good


“Coming up next is … someone else,” Bad Religion’s Greg Graffin said as the legendary punk outfit wrapped up their Sunday afternoon set. He was referring to Underoath, a post-hardcore band of earnest Floridians whose entire raison d’etre seems stamped on the opposite side of Graffin’s coin. Yeah, their music is heavy as hell, but it’s also grotesquely weepy and super corny, which isn’t helped by the band’s overwrought onstage theatrics. It’s like they’re all battling to see who can spasm the hardest; I’d give the trophy to the band’s keyboardist, who leaps between his kit and laptop like he’s trying to disarm 10 separate bombs. Starting your set 10 minutes late doesn’t help, either, especially when you were inexplicably given 15 more minutes than Bad Religion, who came out on time. –Randall Colburn

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