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All American Rejects
The Fillmore at Irving Plaza
New York, NY
Nov. 18, 2008
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Story and photos by Kate Seesholtz

"Damn, we sound just like the fucking record tonight, guys!" Tyson Ritter, enigmatic front man of pop/rock group The All-American Rejects, proclaimed as his band played The Fillmore at Irving Plaza in New York City on Tuesday evening. The All-American Rejects grabbed the young crowd's attention immediately, opening with their breakthrough hit, "Swing, Swing" and leading into "Dirty Little Secret," a song that made them an MTV staple.

As soon as the band opened, fans were quickly being pulled out for crowd surfing and near fainting. The audience seemed to be split between young high school girls; clearly there to swoon over Ritter's piercing blue eyes, and young business professionals just trying to catch a good Tuesday night show. For as young as the crowd was, Ritter was fiercely explicit. After stopping mid strum on a guitar solo, Ritter taunted, "No, I'm leaving you blue balled because that's what you do to me." The All American Rejects clearly know their fan base, and could not have been more excited to play to them.

The bands energy was palpable throughout the entire performance. This was their first NYC show in two years (they have been working on an upcoming album), and they clearly were thrilled to be back. They played a special stripped down version of "It Ends Tonight," done especially for their New York fans. They also showcased music from their upcoming album, When The World Comes Down, including the title track which was slower with a bit of twang, a refreshing change of pace from their usual pop/rock driven sound.

The All-American Rejects ended their set in typical rock star fashion, by Tyson Ritter smashing his electric guitar to pieces on the stage. It seemed like a spur of the moment decision, fueled by the pure passion and excitement to finally be back playing New York City. Ritter continued to decimate the guitar long after the lights had gone out, all while the crowd cheered him on. Even long after the fans had begun to clear out, Ritter came back to hand out guitar picks and sweat soaked set lists (much to the excitement of the teenage girls in attendance). The All American Rejects have a true passion for their music and fans, something that is quickly becoming hard to find in this industry.

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