By: Wade Panizzoli
I have been looking forward to June 1st since February 20th, as this was the day Citizen announced a mini-tour with hardcore-punk band, Angel Du$t, which included three Michigan dates. Citizen is defined easiest as a rock band from the Detroit / Toledo area with influences across many genres and styles. Citizen has become a favorite of mine since first introduced to the group in 2015.
It was finally Friday, June 1st, and a car full of friends and I were on our way to El Club in Detroit. After a car ride full of excitement, we had finally arrived and made our way inside the venue. Upon walking inside the venue, it seemed like it was a family reunion with the number of friends and family that came out to support the band. Shortly after getting there at 7:30pm, an hour after the door time, the first band took the stage, Pronoun. The set was filled with indie-rock songs, which the vocalist, Alyse Telluro, was sure to capture new fans with her soothing vocals.
Oso Oso was the next band to play. Not having too much interest in their set while seeing them in late January with Tiny Moving Parts, my interest was surely reversed seeing them this time around. With catchy choruses and loud guitar parts, this indie-rock band’s set makes me want to check out their newest record “The Yunahon Mixtape.” I really appreciated that this band spent less time talkin’ and more time rockin’.
My anticipation is increasing sharply, as hardcore-punk band Angel Du$t takes the stage next. Angel Du$t hails from Baltimore / DC area, including members from hardcore bands Turnstile and Trapped Under Ice. It’s been since the fall of 2015 since I’ve seen Angel Du$t, and the time has finally come. Angel Du$t ripped open the set with “Stay” from their 2016 sophomore LP, “Rock the F**k on Forever.” The set was very diverse in the songs from the debut and sophomore LPs, and only containing one song from their 7” “Xtra Raw.” The set was made up of classics and personal favorites including “Let It Rot”, “Stepping Stone”, “Bad Thing”, “Headstone”, and “Rectify.” It was very cool to see different personalities and abilities from these artists. Brendan Yates, the vocalist of Turnstile, brought tons of guitar riffs during this set and Justice Tripp, the vocalist of both Trapped Under Ice and Angel Du$t, sang in a different style and showed us all how to dance. The show was very calm until these guys came on stage and unleashed massive amounts of stagediving, two-stepping, and shouting vocals that came from the crowd.
At the conclusion of the wild Angel Du$t set, the majority of the concert goers made their way as close to the stage as they could. As every second went by, the room filled up with family, fans, and friends to watch the beloved headliner. The 20-minute set change went extremely fast despite everyone being so anxious, and then the native Citizen started to play. They opened with absolute bangers from their debut and acclaimed “Youth.” “Roam the Room” is the opening track on that record and is what they opened the set with which was not too much of a surprise. What was a surprise, though, is that they immediately followed with “The Summer”, which is one of the most well-known songs, if not the most well-known. A person could tell how much love for this band was in the room as Citizen had all the audience’s attention and had a handful of friends and family watching them from side-stage and back-stage. The set was filled with all of the hits and some surprises including “The Night I Drove Alone”, “In the Middle of It All”, “Cement”, “Ugly Luck” and “Speaking with a Ghost.” Their 45-minute set flew by. Closing with the first single from 2017’s “As You Please”, “Jet” was the song that had the most energy to it. It was like Citizen summoned everyone to start stage-diving when they first started to play the intro guitar riff. As soon as Citizen left the stage, the crowd started to chant “one more song” with their adrenaline at an all-time high. Moments later Citizen came back on stage stating how thankful they were to be back in Detroit and then proceeded to say, “This is a song we haven’t played in a long time.” I didn’t have enough time to process that statement in my head before they started to play “Stain”, a song with potentially more energy than “Jet.” That theory was proven right, as the crowd completely went off, including myself. I had such a stellar time that night which resulted in going to Saginaw at the conclusion of the weekend to see the exact same show.