Chris Gethard, Jeff Rosenstock, Screaming Females, Hiccup & Mal Blum celebrated TCGS’ Fusion debut @ Rough Trade (pics)
photos by Ryan Muir, words by Andrew Sacher
Chris, Hallie & Jeff / Screaming Females / Mimi on the Hoops
The Chris Gethard Show made the move from public access to cable network Fusion last night (5/28), and Chris and a number of his talented friends celebrated in style with a BrooklynVegan-presented premiere party at Rough Trade NYC. Chris began the night asking if anyone was a fan of TCGS, which was met by roars from the majority of the crowd, and most of the room was bopping around to openers Hiccup, whose lineup includes Hallie Bulleit and Alex Clute from TCGS' house band.
After Hiccup, Chris returned to the stage to introduce the next musical guest, Jeff Rosenstock. As anyone who's seen a Jeff show knows, Jeff Rosenstock fans LOVE Jeff Rosenstock and they go hard the whole time he's on stage. He played as a power trio which included his former Bomb the Music Industry! bandmate John DeDomenici on bass. Chris introduced them and got the performance started with an "EAT MORE BUTTS!" chant (a tradition). That went on for four or five minutes and had pretty much the whole crowd involved. That crowd involvement didn't die once, even during the more lyrically advanced songs. Jeff played stuff off his new solo album, We Cool?, which the crowd already knew all the words to. And when he brought out Fake Problems' Chris Farren to play stuff from their collaborative Antarctigo Vespucci project, the crowd knew all the words to that too. The whole place basically never stopped jumping around (including Chris Gethard, who was in the jumping mob of people for almost the whole set), both on stage and off.
For Jeff's big finale, he brought Chris Gethard back out on stage to sing lead on a Smiths cover (Chris's favorite band), and then Chris and Jeff led the crowd in yet another "EAT MORE BUTTS!" chant. Soon, they were joined by Hallie from Hiccup/TCGS and then she took over the chant in an even crazier way. (Less baseball game chant, more rap metal yelling.) This big grand finale included her and Chris lying on stage, Jeff's guitar making its way through the crowd, and more shenanigans before finally ending with just Jeff's trio playing a piano/synth/xylophone coda.
After all that craziness, the night could have ended there. But of course it didn't, because the main reason the event was even happening had yet to begin: the screening of The Chris Gethard Show's cable TV debut. The episode, which was a bit dark on Rough Trade's screen (sorry about that!), included some impressive guests for his debut, including Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson, who go back with Chris to their UCB days and also work with him on their cable TV show, Broad City. The premise of the episode was acknowledging weird things about your weird body and then totally owning it, and Chris, Ilana and Abbi had guests either Skype in or show up in person to celebrate their bodily weirdness. I won't ruin anything in case you haven't seen the episode yet, but one detail is that it includes a "Genital Chamber" (watch a clip from that part below). To paraphrase Chris, how can you make the move to cable TV and not incorporate genitals? Ending the show was a musical performance from more old friends The Front Bottoms. (Members of TFB were also in attendance at the premiere, but none made appearances on stage.)
After the screening, Chris took the stage again and thanked everyone for watching, and brought out a few other TCGS cast members, including Shannon Patricia O'Neill, Murf, and crowd favorite Mimi on the Hoops for her hula-hooping routine.
Then Chris brought up another musical performer, his Don Giovanni labelmate Mal Blum. Mal and Chris performed their collaborative song "Crying at the Wawa" from Chris's comedy album, My Comedy Album, which came out on Don Giovanni last year. Then Chris left the stage and Mal did a solo cover of Bruce Springsteen's "Dancing in the Dark" (which her DG labelmates Downtown Boys recently recorded a cover of too) followed by one of her own songs.
Chris Gethard and Mal Blum
Finally to wrap up the night was a set from Don Giovanni's shreddingest [sic] band, Screaming Females. Though Screaming Females aren't the sing-along kind of band that Jeff Rosenstock is, and they included no chants about eating butts, the crowd was just as enthusiastic for them. Mimi returned to the stage for more hula-hooping during their set. People all over the floor and in the balconies were dancing and jumping around, and of course the band was great as always. They were super tight, Marissa Paternoster's solos were face-melting as ever, Marissa even crowd surfed, and we got a great setlist with old favorites like "It All Means Nothing" and "I Don't Mind It" mixed in with stuff from their great new album.
Screaming Females (who also gave a performance and Q&A with Ted Leo at Apple Store SoHo a day earlier) next play the area opening for Bouncing Souls in NJ in July. Chris Gethard has more NYC shows, including the Vulture Festival at The Bell House this weekend, and one with Mal Blum, who plays Palisades on 7/2, the day after Hiccup play there with Chumped. Chris Farren next plays NYC in July on his tour with Rocky Votolato and Dave Hause.
Set your DVRs to start taping The Chris Gethard Show on Fusion if you can. Check out more pictures from last night's Rough Trade show and a clip from the first episode, below...
TCGS Screening / Post-Screening