On a beautiful summer evening in Charlotte, early 2000’s pop punk act Cartel opens the Hello Gone Days Tour for Dashboard Confessional and Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness. I am not the most familiar with this lineup , which makes it a treat for me to write this unbiased review and discover new music. I can tell Cartel played their greatest hits as the crowd sang along to the catchy chorus of “Honestly” . The guitar work and stage presence were definitely charismatic as frontman Will Pugh commanded front and center for a bunch of fan favorites. It doesn’t appear that the band is making any new music as their last album was released in 2013. Cartel left a lasting impression for me to check them out more on Spotify!
Dashboard Confessional is another band that I didn’t grow up listening to , but I remember listening to them for the first time on the Spiderman 2 soundtrack . Frontman Chris Carrabba decided to open the show by himself with a slow acoustic track “The Brilliant Dance” . I am used to bands plugging the acoustic track as an intermission to the set to slow things down. It was definitely a nice change to open up their set like that. Dashboard’s 15 track set spanned across their discography very nicely pleasing old and newer fans with tracks like “Turpentine Chaser” (See video below) , “Vindicated”, and “Stolen”. The band played very well and Chris even had help with a seemingly new backup female vocalist that adds a nice layer to the performance. They closed their co headlining set with their most successful hit “Hands Down” which was hands down the best track of their set ! Check out their new album that came out this year “All The Truth That I Can Tell” .
Dashboard Confessional Photo Gallery
Andrew McMahon in The Wilderness
I must say that I felt a little silly when I realized that Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness was the new name of former name, Jack’s Mannequin. You can tell it’s been a while since I followed Andrew and company. I did get excited to see the large sticker bombed grand piano front and center as we awaited the band . They opened their set with an oldie from their Jack’s Mannequin days “Bruised” . The energy of Andrew was unexpected as he was not scared to go from playing the piano, to running across the stage with a mic and then singing while standing on the piano. The 17 song set spanned across new and old tracks from even before Jack’s Mannequin when they were called “Something Corporate” . Overall, the band and Andrew really killed and stole the show with classics and very catchy tunes. It seems that the band is putting out new songs this year and I can’t wait to catch them again on another headlining tour. They are a MUST see live.