Arkells | photo by Wendy McCardle for WXPN

Arkells knew they were fortunate. With the adjustments made to the schedule Friday, things, of course, didn’t go as planned for everyone. So the Hamilton, Ontario-based rockers wasted no time in getting the party going. Main vocalist Max Kerman jumped into the crowd during the band’s very first song, asking them to join him on “A Little Rain (A Song For Pete)” in singing the line “When the rain starts coming down / a little rain ain’t bringing me down.”

Then, for seven more tunes, Arkells practiced what they preached in that lyric. Joined by the Liberty Bell Brass Band on several tracks, they shook Wiggins Park to get every last drop out of the afternoon audience. Kerman gave shoutouts to Ontario native and our new favorite here in Philly, Talia Schlanger. He even shared the deets of that one time the band met Drake’s dad.
But the best part of the set came during its penultimate song, “Private School.” Kerman asked the crowd if anyone could play a few different chords. A youngster up front named Evan volunteered, and thus was born the coolest moment of his life so far (if it doesn’t qualify as such, I really want to know what tops this). Evan came on stage and shredded as if he was just one of the guys for the remainder of the song. He knew the chords and he knew the words. The smile on his face was as wide as they come. And once the Arkells finished off their set with their hit “Knocking At The Door,” Evan’s sentiment seemed to be felt by more than just Evan.