Review: White Reaper Highlights Chicago’s Young Music Scene at Metro

Photo by @rachelzyzda. Whether they knew it or not, all that made it out to Metro on this past Tuesday were in for a treat. Presented by 101WKQX, the historic North-side space presented Peach Pit, Post Animal, and White Reaper; all acts with distinctly different influences, from three different cities, that not only joined together in perfect unity for a chilly night’s all-ages show, but somehow found ways to represent Chicago’s young music scene through their performances. So much so, that it left us thinking that perhaps the influence of Chicago rock music is becoming stronger than we think. Take Peach Pit, the first of the two openers. The Vancouver-natives were relatable, bringing vibes that struck the audience with a relaxed 90s nostalgia. The whimsical backstory of 2017 release Being So Normal’s “Chagu’s Sideturn” had the audience laughing midway through the set, but for very brief glimpse, one could not resist comparing the mannerisms of the lead singer to our locals NE-HI. Throughout the set, many also couldn’t resist comparisons to The Walters, particularly with the striking resemblance between their bassists, Peter Wilton shown above and Danny Wells. Their performance not only made a statement of the quality to come throughout the evening, but struck a bit of pride in the room as it felt quite easy to notice these Chicago influence in their tunes, without feeling unoriginal. To get fully addicted, just listen to “Drop The Guillotine” which was included in their set list. Photo by @rachelzyzda Then came the increasingly buzzy Post Animal, Chicago-natives recently signed to Paradigm. One may have heard of them in the past few years as Joe Keery, or Steve Harrington from "Stranger Things", is an original member of the band. While that certainly was welcome publicity for the group, many would venture to say they would’ve been just fine gaining popularity without that flashy element to the band. Post Animal brought up the energy, and the crowd gave it right back with a constant mosh pit. This was also a bit of an emotional performance for the band, as they were not only without Joe, but also Javi who suffered a stroke on stage at a recent gig. That didn’t stop them from putting on a fantastic show and sending him good wishes, including with a fan-made cutout of Javi’s face that was circulating around the audience and stage all night. For more, take a listen to a rare stripped-back performance and make sure to catch their next show! White Reaper /Photo @rachelzyzda Following the performance, the audience’s energy felt all but wasted despite the show time being so early in the evening. Amidst a mass rush for drinks and the bathroom lines, we all prepared for the final stretch of what was to come, and on came Louisville’s White Reaper. Touring with the recent release of The World’s Best American Band, this rowdy quartet took what had already been an energetic night to the next level. While it’s hard to compete with locals in a city like Chicago, the stage presence and punk influences on their music heeded a strong performance. Shows like this make us feel lucky to be in the city we are in, particularly as we just crossed the halfway point in Red Bull’s 30 Days in Chicago. Catch the next show at the Metro here!
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Matt Brooks