Gaslight Anthem is one of those bands that I kept trying to photograph for months, but for some reason or another, just could not make it out to a show. When I saw they were playing a Lolla afterparty at Double Door, I jumped at the chance to see and shoot them. I do some house photography for Double Door, so it’s nice when bands play there because it’s easy for me to get passes (hey, nothing wrong with being lazy once in a while!).
The first thing that comes to mind about this show is how hot it was. I don’t mean that it was a warm summer show. No, it was positively dripping. Chicago’s summer has been very mild this year, except for Lolla weekend, where it was both hot and humid. The humidity on the day of this show was just incredible. I checked after the show and it was something around 70%. But you know what? Sometimes hot and sweaty is what rock is all about. The band trudged on, and still put on a great a show, and the fans crowded in as close as they could, regardless of the heat.
Biggest problem I had with this shoot? My lenses kept fogging up! I was having enough trouble focusing in the very dim light, and then I kept getting condensation on the lenses. As a negative result, I got way less “keepers” than I normally do from a set. But, on the positive side, some of the shots have a fun dreamy quality about them, which makes them a bit unique. Other than that, it was really great to shoot (and see) Gaslight Anthem at a small show. While the pictures may not be as grand as those taken in arenas or big venues, I think they’re a little more intimate.
I shot the set with the typical 5D Mark IIs, the 16-35mm, the 15mm fisheye (for just a song or so), and the 70-200mm for a few across the stage shots.
Speaking of across the stage shots – here’s a tip for Double Door – if you have a photopass, there is a door on stage left that leads both to downstairs and to the stage. When the venue is packed and it’s hard to move around, make sure to get a few shots from that doorway. It gives a different vantage point of the stage, as it’s basically shooting sidestage.