Good Charlotte took the stage Nov. 4 at Riviera Theatre (4746 N. Racine Ave.) in an inspiring, upbeat and time-traveling performance.
The 22-year-old Maryland-based band performed on its Generation Rx tour, titled after its seventh studio album, “Generation Rx.” The band is comprised of vocalist Joel Madden, guitarist and vocalist Benji Madden, bassist Paul Thomas, guitarist and keyboardist Billy Martin and drummer Dean Butterworth.
After announcing its comeback from a four-year hiatus in 2015, the punk rock band still managed to make hits, such as the interlude and opening song, “Generation Rx” and “Self Help.”
The crowd, already pumped up after the openers’ — The Dose, Knuckle Puck and Sleeping with Sirens — performances, jumped and sang along to every song Good Charlotte played.
The Dose, a two-member Los Angeles-based band, opened the night with heavy rock songs as the audience grew. It was followed by Chicago-based band, Knuckle Puck, which said it was excited to play some of their hits, such as “Gone” and “Untitled,” for its hometown. The last opener, Sleeping with Sirens, from Michigan, treated the audience with a high-energy performance with songs such as “If You Can’t Hang” and newest hit “Empire to Ashes.”
The three bands set the mood for Good Charlotte, who took the lit-up stage with loud cheers from the audience.
The setlist varied from old hits that helped the band rise to fame, such as “Little Things” and “The Anthem,” from their 2001 and 2002 albums, respectively, to new and emotionally-charged tunes, such as “Prayers.”
Before performing “Prayers,” the Madden brothers spoke to the audience, encouraging people to continue being the voices of change for the world, and make it a better place.
“I know it feels like [the world’s] fucked up,” Joel said. “Who’s going to save the world? Who’s going to make it a better place?”
The Madden brothers put out messages to the audience multiple times during their concert. Before playing “Hold On” from the band’s “The Young and The Hopeless” album, Benji said it’s important to decide to stand up after a struggle. The song talks about feeling sad and lonely and making the decision to want to get better with it’s chorus “Hold on if you feel like letting go. Hold on, it gets better than you know.”
“This is probably the most important song we’ve ever written in our career,” Benji said.
The band also sent a message to women, by dedicating “Riot Girl” and “Girls & Boys” to the female audience. Chills were felt in the pit when Joel said he’s proud of women, adding he admires and respects them.
Not only was Good Charlotte’s riveting performance emotional in the messages it sent, but it turned a Sunday night into a rock party. Old school anthems like “Story of My Old Man” made the crowd jump up and down with excitement — some audience members even crowd surfed.
The band gave a shout-out to hard rock band Avenged Sevenfold by playing its hit “The River,” which was followed by Good Charlotte’s punk classic “Dance Floor Anthem.”
The show ended with “Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous,” good energy and a surprising lack of encore. Joel and Benji thanked the audience multiple times throughout their show and said they were grateful for the support throughout the band’s career.
“I feel like we could be best friends tonight,” Joel said.
Good Charlotte’s next show is in San Antonio Nov. 10. Good Charlotte’s music can be streamed online.