Superchunk played the Paradise – 6/13

Hyper-enough indie rock vets Superchunk returned for their first electrified Boston show in four years with support from Torres.

The last time we heard from Mac McCaughan and company ’round these parts, the band was celebrating an acoustic reworking of their 1994 classic Foolish with a gig at the Somerville Theater that involved a lot more gentle strumming and sitting down than the typical Superchunk live experience. The band’s new album Wild Loneliness isn’t exactly a party-starter either, trading in the righteous fury of 2018’s What a Time to Be Alive for a more resigned malaise surrounding The State Of Things, but it’s a warm, human record that feels like a through-line from those mellow pre-pandemic gigs.

Not much felt mellow last Monday night at the Paradise though, where 20-plus songs of roaring guitars and nonstop pogoing signaled an evening of vintage ‘Chunk. Split pretty evenly between amped-up renditions of the new songs, deep cuts (“Art Class,” “On the Mouth,” an ear-splitting jam-out of “Fishing”) and the hits (how could you not want to shout along to “Slack Motherfucker” at every show?), it was a set to remind you of the numerous things to love about this band. The indefatigable energy, the ear for hooks, Jason Narducy’s bass acrobatics, McCaughan’s wind-milling. They’re one of indie’s most vital long-running concerns, and it’s always a thrill to have them back in town.

I’ve been seeing opener Torres – the project fronted by singer/songwriter Mackenzie Scott – for a long time. Back in her more spare solo performance days, supporting the likes of Sharon Van Etten and The Walkmen’s Hamilton Leithauser in the mid ’10s (and that last Superchunk show in Somerville, more recently), I was always struck by her piercing lyrics and stage presence. In the time since I last saw her, Scott has evolved Torres into a full-fledged, cranked-to-10 band that played the hell out of songs from last year’s Thirstier and beyond. Certainly one of the best sets I’ve seen her play.

Scroll down for photos from both sets.