Live music has a powerful effect on me, to the point where concert tickets are probably the thing I spend the most money on. A concert excites me and gives me something awesome to look forward to. With this kind of feeling, it's easy to see how a bad show could put me in a bad mood. But not this one. I saw Good Old War perform at Maxwell's in Hoboken, NJ on Friday, June 25. They're a folk-rock band that specializes in chill, groovy, feel-good music. Being a metalhead, their style normally isn't my thing, but they do it so well, it's hard not to fall in love with their music. The band is known for their musical collaborations with Anthony Green, the noted vocalist of many bands, including Circa Survive, The Sound Of Animals Fighting, and Saosin. He's also known for his solo work. Green made a guest appearance on their first album. Knowing this all too well, my friends and I discussed the possibility of Green showing up at the concert to sing the part. We ultimately decided it wouldn't happen. So when we got to the show, we were pleasantly surprised to find Anthony Green standing right next to us as the concert began.
At this point, Good Old War was already on stage and playing. They were spot-on the entire time, playing a mix of songs from their 2008 record "Only Way To Be Alone" and their 2010 self-titled album. Their performance was energetic and intimate, seeing as the venue held around 200 people as its absolute maximum. However, early in their set, they played what I would say is my favorite Good Old War song, "Weak Man," which just happens to be the track that Green guest performs on. He didn't disappoint when he jumped up on stage and delivered a spot on rendering of his verse. After this, Good Old War continued to rock out. The vocal harmonies were tight, the rhythms were lively and energetic, and Dan Schwarz's guitar playing was, for lack of a better word, beautiful. The show ended with the three-piece band leaving the stage and playing some songs in the middle of the crowd, unplugged and personal. This was one of the most fun concerts I have ever been to; the crowd was great, the music was great, everything about it was great. If you've never heard of Good Old War, that needs to change right now!