Irish Indie Alt Group “The Academic” Electrified Chicago’s Lincoln Hall last Monday and it’s well worth talking about…

Cred: Rachel Senseman

On a (shouldn’t have been) 27-degree Friday night in Chicago’s Lincoln Park, Lincoln Hall was found buzzing with excitement for The Academic – an Irish quartet from Mullingar. The group is comprised of Craig Fitzgerald on lead vocals and guitar, Dean Gavin on drums, Matthew Murtagh on bass, and Stephen Murtagh on guitar and keyboard. From the minute Cousin Simple ended their (fantastic) set, the crowd began to stir with anticipation.

The band kicked off their set with “Why Can’t We Be Friends,” a track from their album, Tales From The Backseat. The crowd was immediately swept up in the energy of the song, and Fitzgerald’s powerful vocals were a standout feature. Throughout the night, the band played a mix of tracks from both their debut album and their latest release Sitting Pretty.

The Academic’s sound was a perfect blend of indie rock and post-punk influences. Their guitar-driven melodies were reminiscent of early 2000s NYC rock revival bands like The Strokes and Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Meanwhile, their introspective lyrics and Fitzgerald’s emotive delivery gave the songs a depth and complexity that elevated them beyond mere rock anthems.

Cred: Rachel Senseman

One of the highlights of the night was “Bear Claws,” a fan favorite from Tales From The Backseat. The song’s infectious chorus had the entire crowd singing along, and Gavin’s dynamic drumming added an extra layer of excitement to the performance.

Throughout the night, The Academic’s stage presence was engaging and energetic. Fitzgerald bounced around the stage with an infectious enthusiasm, while the rest of the band remained focused and locked in on their instruments. The group’s chemistry was palpable, and it was clear that they were having a blast playing together.

As the night drew to a close, The Academic closed out their set with “Sitting Pretty,” the title track from their latest album. The song’s soaring chorus and upbeat tempo had the crowd dancing and singing along, and it was the perfect note to end the night on.

The Academic’s performance at Lincoln Hall was a tour de force of indie rock energy and emotion. Their expert musicianship and infectious energy had the crowd in the palm of their hand from start to finish, and it was clear that the band has a bright future ahead of them. If these lads come to a city near you (below) be sure to grab tickets while they last…

North America Tour: TONIGHT Brick & Mortar Music Hall – San Francisco, CA

Monday4/17Lincoln HallChicago, IL
Tuesday4/187th Street EntryMinneapolis, MN
Friday4/21Globe HallDenver, CO
Saturday4/22SoundwellSalt Lake City, UT
Monday4/24Madam Lou’sSeattle, WA
Tuesday4/25Biltmore CabaretVancouver, Canada
Wednesday4/26HolocenePortland, OR
Friday4/28Brick & Mortar Music HallSan Francisco, CA
Saturday4/29TroubadourWest Hollywood, CA
Sunday5/7The FillmorePhiladelphia, PA
Tuesday5/9The SinclairBoston, MA
Thursday5/11AxisToronto, Canada
Saturday5/13OttobarBaltimore, MD
Sunday5/14Bowery BallroomNew York, NY