The Metro in Chicago is iconic for hosting bands revered around the world, as well as local acts looking to make it big. As hundreds of people lined up outside of the venue Sunday night, the band taking the stage at the stroke of midnight filled both musical requirements: A local pop-punk band out of Minneapolis who had toured across the world, most recently wrapping up a quick jaunt in Japan. Tonight was a bit different, however; Motion City Soundtrack was set to take the stage for the very last time.
Fans came from all across the country to see the band’s final performance and had been lined up outside the Metro for 12 hours. While the band had performed at Riot Fest the day before to thousands of fans, this show would be far more intimate and fitting for the group’s farewell. The electric, anxious crowd flooded to the barricade in front of the stage and happily jumped along to openers Kailynn West of Tiny Stills (who filled in last-minute when Black Foxxes were unable to make it) and local band Lifted Bells. As the lights dimmed and vocalist Justin Pierre took the stage, the only sound that could be heard was the deafening roar of screaming, grateful fans, elated to see their favorite band for the last time.
Playing an unbelievable 36-song set spanning their 20-year career, it was clear that every single member of the band was thrilled to be there. While the band has decided to break up for the foreseeable future, the group still clearly respect and adore one another. Taking a break after “Cambridge,” Pierre turned to guitarist Joshua Cain and said, “I wasn’t going to get emotional, but this asshole gave me a hug backstage.” Pierre went on to thank every member of the group, his wife “for putting up with all of this,” and the fans for their decades of support and love. While Pierre managed to hold it together, a few fans in the front row weren’t able to do the same.
Musicians often aren’t given enough credit for holding a band together, especially one that creates new music throughout their career. All five members of Motion City Soundtrack sacrificed seeing their families for months at a time. All five members spent countless late hours in the studio, writing songs that their fans would love. As the night came to a close, confetti launched into the air as the band wrapped up for the last time. The energy never faded, the fans never stopped singing, and the music was left ringing in everyone’s ears long after the band left the stage. That music will never leave fans’ hearts, and, judging by the love and happiness of each member of Motion City Soundtrack, it won’t be leaving for them anytime soon either.