Concert Review: Gym Class Heroes Draws Low Turnout

In the ’60s, a band was defined not only by how many albums they sold, but by how many people came out to see them live. If the Gym Class Heroes concert at Big Bridges on Sunday was to be judged by that metric, it could only be described as dismal.The concert began on time. The Curious Case of Miriam Feldblum (CCMF) opened to an audience of about one hundred students. CCMF is not your typical college-student band. At first glance, the band seems as if it were comprised of five aging band members on a reunion tour: the vocalist was dressed in ’70s disco-themed clothes, the guitarist had an ’80s wardrobe, and the keyboardist seemed to have escaped from the ’20s. There was nothing wrong with what they were wearing or what they played, but what they lacked in pitch they made up for in gusto.“The Curious Case of Miriam Feldblum had no stage-presence whatsoever,” said Sabrina Williams PO ’10. “They were bumps on logs and barely tried to interact with the audience.”That is not entirely true. CCMF was a riot, if you paid any attention to their jokes. The band went so far as to deliver a song that was made up of three jokes over a backing instrumental. The audience laughed, either because they found it amusing or out of pity.“I hope they’ll keep broadening their repertoire and I’d definitely like to see them at future events,” said James Koved PO ‘10, who has seen them once before.Half an hour after CCMF finished their set, Gym Class Heroes took the stage with Big Bridges still more than two-thirds empty.GCH can be classified as a hip-hop rock band made up of four permanent members and two others while on the road. They are widely recognized for their major hit single “Cupid’s Chokehold,” a song that samples Supertramp’s “Breakfast In America.”Making their appearance onstage, vocalist Travis McCoy quickly grabbed the audience’s attention by saying, “Let me hear you say ‘yeah,’” and asking them to dance. People soon stood on seats, crowded the aisle, and eventually were asked to participate in the song “Peace Sign/Index Down” by putting up a peace sign, then putting their index fingers down.It might be possible that McCoy spent more time talking in between songs than actually singing. As I stood there watching this band that I had briefly seen live a year ago, I realized that in the past McCoy did not spend so much time discussing his love life. During the gig, he could not stop talking about his newly single status, reassuring the crowd several times that he was happy to be single.“The lead singer was a bit different than most in what he talked about between songs, he was a little more personal than most other lead singers, which may or may not be a good thing,” said Bjorn Commers PO ’11.I do not think the crowd cared about his love life. I sure did not. These brief reassurances about how well he dealt with this break-up definitely hurt the concert experience.“Gym Class Heroes put on an energetic, tight performance, despite Travis McCoy’s level of intoxication,” said Thomas Lane PO ’10.That might be why McCoy spent so much time whining rather than singing.As the band kept playing, McCoy spent time introducing the songs that would follow, and the crowd maintained their energetic faade. After less than an hour of play, the band retired because they had to catch a flight to Sacramento, McCoy said.Bands tend to get off the stage and come back for an encore after five minutes, or longer, but this was not the case for GCH. Barely three minutes had passed when the guitarist re-appeared, playing a solo; he was later joined by the rest of the band, and finally by McCoy. The encore included three songs, ending with “Live A Little.”Overall, the concert was entertaining. Some of the spectators complained that the concert was held on a Sunday, not on a day when students would be more willing to sacrifice study time for amusement. It was unfortunate not to see all of the seats filled.“I was disappointed by the turnout, which reflected the mismatch of the concert to Pomona students’ musical tastes,” Lane said. “Variety is nice, but when we only get one concert a year, I think we could have chosen better than Gym Class Heroes.”

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