Retirement Party played a high energy set at the Arts at the Armory, opening along with Camp Trash for Pet Symmetry. The tall ceilings of the Armory and brick walls made for great atmosphere and cool acoustics for the bands. There were no chairs for this event—just a few tables that were perfect for people standing who wanted to rest their beers. The hip crowd looked like it nearly reached the 395-person capacity for the space. Many of the people were wearing their best thrift shop finds with Converse shoes and Doc Martin’s being the popular footwear of choice.
Retirement Party is led by Avery Springer on guitar and vocals wearing her signature baseball cap. Chris Dertz was on bass with Evan Weiss and Marcus Nuccio from Pet Symmetry on guitar and drums. They meshed well together coming across as a group that had been playing together for much longer than they have, and they really seemed to be enjoying playing together. At one point near the end of the set Evan got very invested in a song and broke out some intense dance moves while he played guitar–even more extraordinary than his usual moves. During the next song Chris could be heard exclaiming that he loved to play this piece of music. He danced around to the point that his glasses flew off his face and he had to go searching for them, he finally found them next to the drums. During one of the songs Chris and Evan switched and played each other’s instruments, an impressive feat.
The crowd got very into the show singing along to the lyrics and even forming a push pit in front of the stage for about half of the songs. Despite the push pit, Avery remarked on how quiet and polite the crowd was during a lull. Retirement Party played 10 songs for a nicely rounded set that included a few fan favorites such as Truck Stop Casino. One of the songs played was not a Retirement Party song but an Avery Springer solo work, Good Company, which was well received. The few transitions between songs where there was no instrument tuning or banter were seamless.
There was some good banter between songs including “Its capo on the 1 time, you’re in for a real fucking treat” and “this is my Green Day song.” Then it got personal with “sorry about your basketball team right now” which elicited a bunch of cheers mixed with a little jeering. My only complaint is that the vocals were hard to make out in the mix which made it incredibly hard to hear the lyrics. Avery’s voice sounded great, especially for this point on a tour with no breaks. I’m so glad I got to see them perform live and that they are back from retirement. I can’t wait to see how they develop and what they do next!