Dillinger 4th of July at Triple Rock, 7/4/14

Categories: Concert Review

Erik Hess
Dillinger 4th of July
With Dillinger 4, Masked Intruder, the Brokedowns, Canadian Rifle, and Direct Hit!
Triple Rock Social Club, Minneapolis
Friday, July 4, 2014

Independence Day is a time to reflect on the reasons we love this great nation of ours so much. A time to celebrate the freedoms we Americans often take for granted, and a time to remember the sacrifices of those who have fallen to protect them. It's about Old Glory, family, baseball, and apple pie.

Screw it, who am I kidding? The 4th of July is an excuse for Dillinger Four to throw the best holiday punk show of the summer and invite us all down to the Triple Rock to party. God bless America.

See also:
Slideshow: D4th of July at the Triple Rock

Erik Hess
Erik Hess

While we're reflecting on things that we treasure but often take for granted, let's talk about Dillinger Four. They've been active since 1994, meaning that this year's D4th is somewhere around their 20-year anniversary. In that time, our iconoclastic local punk heroes have released four stellar albums and garnered a cult following among lovers of melodic, aggressive music around the nation. One might not realize it at first glance, but the sound that they pioneered has been massively influential on the generation of bands that formed in their wake, especially here in the Midwest. That influence is made starkly apparent at their annual D4th of July shows, which evolved from a single-night stand at their home base of the Triple Rock to a two-day mini-festival that draws in supporting talent from as far away as Brooklyn and Belgium.

These days, Dillinger Four play only a few shows a year, making the 4th of July gigs all the more important for the faithful. While the band already have a well-earned reputation for wacky drunken shenanigans during their performances, the D4th shows tend to be the wildest and least coherent of the year. At this point, bassist and singer Paddy Costello has dropped trou onstage more often than most fans can count, spun out hilarious and caustic rants fueled by whiskey, and even tangled with mischievous little people. D4 diehards now rate shows on a continuum of drunkenness, rather than a binary. The thing is, this year was relatively devoid of goofy debauchery. Instead, the band just played a kickass show.

Erik Hess
Erik Hess

Guitarist and singer Erik Funk's voice sounded particularly strong this year, especially on hit material from Situationist Comedy like "Sell the House...," although Paddy and a few members of the audience might have taken the song's line "Smoke 'em if you got 'em cause we're never gonna learn" a bit too literally. Good thing D4 owns the bar, you can't really 86 your boss for smoking cigs onstage.

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