Pop-punk heroes New Found Glory played a special all-request show last night at Chain Reaction in Anaheim. Tickets for this party sold out in about eight seconds, so anyone who was there last night was pretty lucky.
I know pop-punk isn't everyone's favorite type of music, and because I don't want to fanboy-out for an overly long recap, I'll try to keep this shorter than usual.
I've now seen NFG somewhere around 26-30 times, including countless Warped Tours, Live 105 radio festivals and headlining gigs. Last night was one of the best, mainly because it was so special.
Hell, even Hollywood legend/insane person Gary Busey and son Jake Busey were there. I wouldn't have pegged them for NFG fans, but perhaps they are.
Opening the show was the Bay Area's own This Time Next Year. They're a pop punk band out of Walnut Creek, California on Equal Vision Records who just finished recording a new record with the help of NFG guitarist Chad Gilbert. It just so happens that I went to high school and college with TTNY front man Pete Dowdalls, so it's great to see them getting some exposure and (hopefully) more attention with the forthcoming record.
After their energy-packed opening set, fellow Bay Area outfit Heartsounds (on Epitaph Records) did their thing, equally as energetic and lively as TTNY. Guitarist/singer Ben Murray said they have a new record coming out in June, so you'll probably hear more about them in the coming months.
Then, it was time for the main event. Emerging onto the tiny stage to the Chariots of Fire theme music, NFG smashed through a typically caffeinated set filled with all sorts of fan favorites.
Requests were made via a box on the merch table, and the band gathered the votes before the set and created the set list from the tallies. There weren't really any songs that would cause my fellow fanboys to geek out and say things like "OMG NO WAY THEY PLAYED THAT???" but the set list was still top-notch, with a lot of seldom-played tunes.
Here's the official set list, as per Steve Klein's Twitter account.
In order, they played:
- Understatement (Sticks & Stones)
- At Least I'm Known for Something (Catalyst)
- Better Off Dead (New Found Glory)
- All Downhill From Here (Catalyst)
- Sincerely Me (New Found Glory)
- It Never Snows in Florida (Nothing Gold Can Stay)
- Head On Collision (Sticks & Stones)
- Truck Stop Blues (Not Without a Fight)
- Glory of Love (From the Screen to Your Stereo I)
- Boy Crazy (New Found Glory)
- 47 (Not Without a Fight)
- On My Mind (Coming Home)
- Something I Call Personality (Sticks & Stones)
- Vegas (New Found Glory)
- Truth of My Youth (Catalyst)
- The Story So Far (Sticks & Stones)
- Tip of the Iceberg (Tip of the Iceberg EP)
- Singled Out (Sticks & Stones)
- Failure's Not Flattering (Catalyst)
- Dressed To Kill (New Found Glory)
- It's Been a Summer (Sticks & Stones)
- Hit or Miss (New Found Glory)
- 3rd And Long (Nothing Gold Can Stay)
- Kiss Me (From the Screen to Your Stereo II)
- Don't Let Her Pull You Down (Not Without a Fight)
- Forget My Name (Sticks & Stones)
- My Friends Over You (Sticks & Stones)
In all, it was a fantastic, career-spanning set, a testament to the band's productivity and efficiency in being responsible for a lot of top-tier pop-punkery.
They did this little one-off request show because, as Gilbert said on stage, they've played a lot of these type of shows on the East Coast but "never in Southern California". They're also warming up for some Japanese festival gigs in a few days.
New Found Glory is a band I've admired since 2000. Their high-energy shows are a blast, even making some non-fans get lost in the bouncy riffs and have a good time. They're not for everyone, just as the genre itself isn't, but for those who do enjoy it, it's hard to do it better than NFG.
Enjoy some semi-blurry photos and vids from the show below.
Tip of the Iceberg
The Story So Far
Kiss Me (Sixpence None the Richer cover)
It's Been a Summer
Forget My Name