Students at Quinnipiac weren’t the only ones who seemed to be in the Halloween spirit this weekend. Starting off the SPB’s annual fall concert was the band Matchbook Romance from Poughkeepsie, N.Y., dressed in Halloween attire.
Lead vocalist and guitarist Andrew “Andy” Jordan sported white face makeup and black eye makeup hollowing out his eyes, a Jack-O-Lantern accompanying him onstage. Bassist Ryan Kienle wore a masquerade mask with a matching hat and a fake handlebar mustache, while back up vocalist and guitarist Ryan “Judas” DePaolo wore an afro-like wig. It was drummer Aaron Stern, though, who impressed the crowd as he drummed the entire 40 minute set with a mask that covered his entire head.
The crowd immediately responded to the band’s costumes by screaming, and joined in with Andy as the first song off their album “Voices” began. It wasn’t until fan favorite “Playing for Keeps” off of “Stories and Alibis” began in the middle of their set that the crowd returned the band’s enthusiastic performance by singing along loudly, hands raised in the air. The song “Promise” closed Matchbook’s set to shouts of approval, the audience cheering loudly as they sang along, practically singing over the band.
Sugarcult, though not quite as into the Halloween spirit as Matchbook Romance, quickly followed, giving a high energy performance. Lead singer Tom Pagnotta couldn’t pronounce the name Quinnipiac, and instead, referred to it as “Wikipedia.”
During Sugarcult’s performance of “Riot,” off their new album “Lights Out,” a group of guys in the back of the crowd started a mosh pit, leading the band to shout out profanities of excitement.
“It’s supposed to be fun, it’s supposed to be entertaining,” Pagnotta said. His favorite songs to perform live are “Memory,” “Pretty Girl (The Way)” and “Los Angeles.”
“People are a little more open. We get to play songs we wouldn’t normally play. College shows are a little bit different because.they’re (college students) a little more conscious, looking around at what their friends are into,” Pagnotta said.
After playing its last song, the band exited the stage to immediate shouts of “one more song” from the students. Applause followed as the band took its place for one last song, treating the crowd to “Bouncing Off the Walls.”
“I like songs people like to sing along to,” Pagnotta said. And the students gladly obliged.