Riding in on the tail of last weekend’s Riot Fest, Punk the Burbs 2 is the local answer to music junkies looking for their next fix.
“The punk rock (from Riot Fest) is already in everybody’s heads,” said Jason Fein, one of the two founders and coordinators of the full-day music festival. “This is a lot more laid-back, easy-to-attend version of it.”
Fein, frontman and vocalist for rowdy rock band The Run Around, and fellow coordinator Caitlin Edwards of six-piece ska/punk band Bumsy and the Moochers are bringing the celebration of punk, rock and ska into its second year Saturday, Sept. 22, at Basecamp Pub & Eatery in Lisle.
“There’s really no festival in the suburbs for this type of music,” Fein said. “There’s Ribfest and Last Fling and all that, but nothing dedicated to this style or genre of music like the city has.”
Fein, a current Oswego resident, and Edwards both spent significant portions of their childhood in Naperville.
“Caitlin and I have been friends for a long time, and we played in bands together on and off for at least a decade,” Fein said. “We grew up in the suburban scene, the growing scene in Naperville and Downers Grove and Lombard, and all the bands that came from those territories. When we were young, that’s where the scene was happening.”
This year, the festival makes a move to Lisle from last year’s debut in West Chicago.
“This is dead smack in the middle of everything that went on for us as kids,” he said. “Our goal is you gotta get bigger every year.”
While providing a bigger venue for the daylong festival, Basecamp is also a more fitting stage for this year’s national headliner, The Queers from New Hampshire.
The fest gives Chicago-area musicians a new opportunity. “It’s a chance for the local scene to play in front of some national bands. And The Queers … they’re pop-punk royalty for sure.”
The rest of the day’s lineup comprises 15 bands culled from more than 100 submissions, most from the Chicago area and almost all – including Take the Reins, Comatoast, Bury Me In Lights, Feedback Fiends, Guardrail, The Linden Method, The Bollweevils and more — are new to the fest.
“There were so many we listened to, so many I liked,” Fein said.
“We tried to not have a lot of repeats from last year,” he added. “The only repeat is Stellar West – School of Rock original kids. They’re all really talented. I want to give an opportunity to kids I know work hard, and there are no kids who work harder than the School of Rock kids.”
Fein knows this firsthand. He recently opened a School of Rock outpost in Schaumburg, joining his first two in Geneva and Plainfield. “Last year you saw some of the older bands say ‘Alright, we can’t get shown up by these kids, so we need to put on that much better of a show.'”
“It’s fun,” he said. “The music scene is always going to be a little bit competitive, but as long as there’s good nature and everybody’s supporting one another, it’s fine. When it gets to ‘YOU succeed or I succeed,’ that’s the mentality we try to avoid.
“We don’t put any bands on this bill that we think are going to be like that because it’s supposed to be a morale-booster, a chance to play in front of a couple of hundred people,” Fein explained. “Some of these bands, as good as they are, don’t get a chance to play in front of that kind of a crowd. Some of us who are lucky enough to do that every once in a while probably take that for granted, but some of these bands that are really good never get to play in front of more than 20 or 30 of their family and friends, and this is an opportunity to do that.”
BaseCamp’s main stage layout ensures that opportunity as all the bands will be playing on the same stage with quick 10-minute changeovers, exposing the audience and the bands to a variety of genres and sounds. Plus, the fast-paced nature of the fest lends itself to networking for the bands.
“It’s about camaraderie,” Fein said. “It’s a real scene-building opportunity.”
• • •
Punk the Burbs 2
When: Noon Saturday, Sept. 22, to 1 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 23
Where: BaseCamp Pub & Eatery, 5750 Lakeside Drive, Lisle
Tickets: $20 online, $25 at the door; ticketweb.com
• • •
Noon – Feedback Fiends
12:40 p.m. – Short Story Inc.
1:20 p.m. — Comatoast
2 p.m. — Take the Reins
2:40 p.m. — Bury Me in Lights
3:20 p.m. — Bad Planning
4 p.m. — Guardrail
5 p.m. — The Linden Method
5:45 p.m. — Mystery Actions
6:30 p.m. — Stellar West
7:15 p.m. — Avenues
8 p.m. — Something To Do
8:45 — Bumsy and the Moochers
9:35 p.m. — The Run Around
10:25 p.m. — The Bollweevils
11:45 p.m. — The Queers