Around the beginning of the new millennium, anyone listening to the radio would hear the explosion of pop-punk songs flooding the airwaves, the equivalent of new wave hits in the eighties or alternative rock in the nineties. Most bands were one-hit wonders, dropping a catchy song that might be in rotation for a year, tops. The bands that lasted the fallout fell through the cracks. Chicago’s Lucky Boys Confusion, with their brand of ska-punk infused hip-hop, can attest to that as this year marks their fourteenth anniversary.
Kaustubh “Stubhy” Pandav, vocalist and guitarist, recalls, “A lot has changed. It seems like a lot of the bands making waves these days are older and been through the grind.” LBC embodies this, as their experience has given them the perspective of what it takes to maintain longevity. When playing locally, they still pack in clubs, much as they had done throughout their career, regardless of how the music landscape has changed. “I wish there was as much solidarity as there was when we first started,” says Pandav. “I think that takes some band that is doing well to take the reigns, like LBC, the Dog and Everything and the Plain White T’s did for our scene.”
LBC has had its share of ups-and-downs. In 2004 they were released from major label Elektra records. Then in 2006, the band went on hiatus. This left its members time to form side projects such as Pandav’s vehicle, the Super Happy Fun Club. “We had been touring non-stop since 2000 and just needed a break. The plan wasn’t ever to completely stop playing but to just explore other musical directions.” Now older, the band has been able to choose what moves work for them. In the end, it was hard for them to give up something they were invested in. It was also their fan’s support rallying them to stay together. “We still wanted to keep playing shows as long as the fans wanted to see us play,” says Pandav. “Here we are five years later!” (John Wawrzaszek)
June 18 at House of Blues, 329 North Dearborn, 7pm. $18-$20. All ages.