Nineties kids, I’ve noticed, have a tendency to renounce phases of their youth they deem unbecoming. They pass over entire swaths of childhood with a single token phrase (“That was my ‘emo’ phase”, etc.) and a nervous, uncomfortable chuckle. They want as much distance put between themselves and that in-between chapter of their lives as possible, as a marker of how they’ve grown, progressed, matured. The music of the punk/pop band Good Charlotte, for better or worse, might very well have been the soundtrack to one of those discarded eras. Alongside their oft-forgotten ilk – bands like Sum 41, Yellowcard, the All-American Rejects, and Simple Plan – the group helped define the mid-2000s suburban milieu of rebellion, wallet chains, and ubiquitous, deeply-felt angst.
Say what you will about that day and age, but songs like “The Anthem,” “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous,” and “I Just Wanna Live” were huge, passed around in high-school hallways on the nascent portable music players of the generation, consumed in large quantities in record stores, and blasted out of car, bus, and soccer-mom minivan speakers. Good Charlotte were, for a brief moment in time, culturally and historically significant. And while the founding members, the identical twins Joel and Benji Madden, have pursued other paths (both, for example, embarking on coaching stints on The Voice – Australia, and both actively supporting PETA), they continued releasing music throughout the entire first decade of the new millennium before a hiatus was announced in 2011.
Yet in the wake of their first record in six years (Youth Authority, released this past July) we’re fortunate enough to witness a resurgence, a comeback tour alongside the likes of Four Year Strong, The Story So Far, and Big Jesus. A lineup like this boasts both the veterans (Good Charlotte and Four Year Strong), joined by what can only be called the Young Guns, the New Breed: Walnut Creek, California’s The Story So Far, and the Atlanta-based shoegaze-influenced Big Jesus. The four high-energy acts will be hitting DC’s premier nightclub/venue this coming Tuesday, and we can only hope to see plenty of nostalgia in the form of wallet-chains, spiked hair, and mosh-pit carnage inside the vast, polished cavern that is Echostage.
Scroll down for a few of the headlining bands’ career highlights, and find some last minute tickets here.
The Story So Far