Fresh off a huge tour with Sum 41, Super Whatevr returned to Phoenix on Wednesday, bringing their new fans with them. Joined by Beach Goons, King Shelter and local group Adult Feelings, the show was reminiscent of DIY house shows in the very best way.
Adult Feelings got the party started, making sure that all their Arizona friends came early and stuck around for the stellar acts to follow. Beach Goons was up next and they’re the kind of band to make the audience at the bar turn to watch the show. The So-Cal three-piece played raucous indie-punk, changing things up with several songs in Spanish. The mosh pit was immediate and at least the whole front row knew every word. Beach Goons had our attention but the audience really went crazy to their closing song- a fast, loud dance party to an incredible cover of “La Bamba.”
“I hope you like Tool,” said Los Angeles group King Shelter, jumping into a genre-bending set. With driving guitars and killer harmonies, the highlight of the energetic set was “Blue Pigz,” a song that started the mosh pit in the band’s designated break dancing circle.
King Shelter’s personalities might embody stereotypical California beach-dwellers but their direct support slot was a well-oiled machine. In short- these guys can play. The band previewed new songs due out this fall before closing their set with the audience request for “Everything Hurts” and “Failure.”
Though Super Whatevr just finished a massive tour with Sum 41, they have not forgotten their roots. What started as the passion project of vocalist Skylar McKee has turned into a movement. This was the first night of the band’s current tour and they were very clearly having the time of their lives being back in front of such an enthusiastic crowd.
Super Whatevr planned an extended set and played their entire debut EP in full, along with songs from the band’s latest effort Never Nothing. McKee is unapologetically raw onstage, throwing his entire body into his performance. Backed by Nate Wickander on guitar, Josiah Beason on bass and Josh Gomez on drums, the band kept the fans moving and singing every word.
The most poignant moment of every Super Whatevr show is “Someone Somewhere Somehow.” Written about losing a family member to suicide, McKee’s emotion is always very intense and genuine. The fans felt it too and it was the most beautiful moment of the night.
They picked the vibe right back up with a rare performance of “Cops on Motorcycles,” a clear fan favorite based on the reaction. Super Whatevr closed the night with a rowdy combo of “Misquote” and “Good Luck.”
The entire evening kept the intimate vibes of venues much smaller than Rebel Lounge. The crowd pressed closer to the stage with every band and for that evening, the bands and fans had the bonds of family. Super Whatevr may be on bigger stages very soon but watching them bounce off the walls at at a club show will never get old.
Story and photos by Olivia Khiel