As Kevin Bivona, guitarist of The Interrupters (www.wearetheinterrupters.com), told people at the Orpheum on March 9, the first rule of punk is to pick people up when they fall down. The Interrupters played a sold-out show along with opening acts Masked Intruder and Rat Boy.
Starting with “A Friend Like Me,” the Interrupters played for about an hour and 15 minutes. They played 20 songs, which were taken roughly equally between their three albums. The audience sang along the entire show, even during snippets of cover songs. The band interacted with the crowd throughout the show.
Lead singer Aimee Interrupter got off the stage a few times to sing with the crowd. Bivona spoke directly to people. Drummer Jesse Bivona brought out cameras to record the audience. Justin Bivona, the bassist, also kept constant contact with people in the crowd. The members of the Interrupters really care about their fans.
Shortly after starting the song “Jenny Drinks,” the band stopped the show because a fan fell down. This was the point where Kevin told everyone the first rule of punk. He said punk music is to bring unity to people. “Broken World” from their “Fight the Good Fight” album is about how they want to bring unity to people.
Aimee said they met some fans the night before in Ft. Lauderdale who said they were going to follow the band for a few shows. The fans said they wanted to hear the song “Room With a View.” Even though they had never played it live before, the Interrupters played the song in Tampa and waved to the people from Ft. Lauderdale.
Close to the end of their set, Kevin said what would happen if the Interrupters was a huge band playing in an arena. Everyone would go backstage and listen to the crowd chant their name hoping for an encore. The band members would then decide if they wanted to come back out. Kevin said they weren’t going to do that; rather, they were going to just keep playing. Aimee and Justin sat down on the drum riser while Kevin played and sang “Home Sweet Home” by Motley Crue. He said it is a typical “encore song” and then thanked the audience for helping make a dream of his come true.
The closing song was “Family.” It is a way for the band to bring everyone in the audience into the band’s extended family. After the song, the band members handed shirts to people and said their goodbyes.
If you were not fortunate enough to get tickets before they sold out, you can still catch the Interrupters when they play at Welcome to Rockville on May 5.
Masked Intruder, direct support, also interacted with the crowd. During the song “Heart Shaped Guitar,” the band brought up an audience member named Kaylee to sing with them. Everyone in the band wears colored ski masks and matching Converse All-Stars Chuck Taylors. They go by the names of the color of their masks. The singer is blue, the guitarist is green, and the drummer is red. Their regular bassist is yellow, but he is apparently “in prison,” so they had a fill-in who wears purple.
Some of their songs, like “Crime Spree” and “Stick ‘Em Up,” are about committing a crime. They also have someone dressed like a stripper cop who stares menacingly and dances during the set. Near the end, he pulls off his “uniform” and dances in a leotard. Their newest album “III,” was released on March 1. (http://maskedintruderband.com/ )
The first act was a musician from England who goes by Rat Boy. This is his first U.S. tour, but people in Tampa were already familiar with him. They chanted “Rat Boy” before he came on and danced a lot during his 30-minute set. His song “Knock Knock” was sampled by Kendrick Lamar in “Lust.” Rat Boy’s latest album, “Internationally Unknown” was released in January and was produced by a lesser-known character named Tim. For more information, go to http://epitaph.com/artists/rat-boy.