By Alexis Ganz
On Friday, April 19, New Found Glory guitarist Chad Gilbert performed with his side project, What’s Eating Gilbert, at the College Union Board’s show in the Rathskeller.
What’s Eating Gilbert, who have been named one of Alternative Press Magazine’s “100 Bands You Need to Know for 2013,” was opened for by With The Punches, a band from New York that has recently broken into the pop punk scene. Before he began, the lead singer, Jesse Vadala, encouraged fans to fill in the seating area in front of the stage, stating a desire for a “close knit atmosphere.”
Before his set Vadala also referenced the trying events, specifically the bombings at the Boston Marathon, which have gripped the nation of late.
“It’s difficult to talk, it’s difficult to sing when events like the last few days happened,” he said. “All I can say is that we’re here trying to do what we normally do.”
Singing with only the accompaniment of an acoustic guitar, the vibe was different than the band’s usual set — slower, more melodic. Still, the crowd clapped and sang enthusiastically along, especially to the more popular fan favorites like “Slizzard Crossing Over” and “Burned at Both Ends.”
“I’ve watched a lot of YouTube videos of their acoustic sets and to actually see them perform live was even better than I expected. I hope they can come back to the College for another set, maybe with the entire band,” said Dean DelVecchio, a sophomore finance major and self-proclaimed pop punk enthusiast.
What’s Eating Gilbert followed the opening performance with an upbeat set, a stark contrast from the previous performance. The fast-paced indie pop set was accentuated by a four-piece band. Though the sound was distinct, there were strains of lead singer Chad Gilbert’s time in New Found Glory. With the band only breaking for seconds between most of the songs, the show proceeded at an exhilaratingly fast pace.
Though many of the songs were new to the crowd, they nodded their heads appreciatively, growing in size and volume as the set progressed. Still, not all of the band’s songs were unknown to the audience. Many in the crowd were die-hard fans, of either the band or Gilbert in particular, thrilled that such a popular name had come to perform at the College.
“It is really awesome that TCNJ can bring Chad Gilbert, part of the famous band New Found Glory, to such an intimate setting. I’ve been listening to these guys all my life,” said Jordan Martinez, senior biology major.
This is What’s Eating Gilbert’s first tour.