With the days getting shorter it was already pitch black as we drove down the dark and ominous street that lead to the venue. It seemed like it took forever to get and finally there was a bright light beaming “Sold Out” on a giant sign out side the club. You could tell by the parking lot that the place was packed. We pulled into the lot parked close to the road.
As we approached the venue I was surprised by the metal detectors and beefed up security. Last year when we were here we did not have all this and it was annoying to have to my purse prodded through.
We had arrived late since I had to make a pit stop in Flemington to pick up my boyfriend from his nerd game convention. We didn’t realize how out of the way we would be and wound up missing the first two bands with the exception of one song by Basement.
From what I heard I liked the English rock act with a hard sound that was grungy and reminded me of a Nirvana-esque sound.
After what seemed like a lengthly set up and instrument check The Front Bottoms took the stage. They had an additional members from last time including a keyboard player and new female trumpet/violinist. Brian Sella was decked out in a fancy pants, a dress shirt and tie. It was weird seeing him dressed up after always playing in t-shirts, jeans, or shorts. The guy behind thought the same thing because he started screaming asking why Sella was dressed up. It turned out that Brian had his cousin’s wedding earlier in the day and he decided to stay in his outfit for the show.
They opened with the up beat intensity “You Used to Say (Holy Fuck).” This was a great way to start the show. The band brought high energy and excitement with them on stage. Everyone was digging the new tracks “Don’t Fill Up on Chips,” “Far Drive,” “Vacation Town,” “Everyone But You,” “Grand Finale,” and “Peace Sign” by signing along and dancing, moshing, and crowd surfing in the pit.
Fan favorites “Maps,” and “Flashlight” were crowd pleasers with “Lipstick Covered Magnet.” The best part was when it got hushed and the crowd was singing all the lyrics to “The Beers.”
I try not to get distracted at shows but the people around me were kind of annoying. There was this tall guy who was not moving and should have stood in the back as to be courteous to shorter people. He seemed not into the band at all. I always feel like if you are not into the band please stand in the back. I was tempted to go onto the floor but I felt like there was a better view from the back bar. Luckily after the show started he didn’t bother me that much.
Every time I go to a show I always love to watch the crowd and see how enthralled they are by the band. This was no exception and the audience was loving everything the band was putting out. Being in their hometown, fans were super excited to see them.
I was a little disappointed that they didn’t play “Trampoline” but they have a lot of songs and I think they did a good mix of old and new stuff that pleased the crowd.
They ended the show with “Twin Size Mattress” then did the fake ending leaving for a few minutes before doing their two song encore of “Jim Bogart” off their EP Rose.
They finished their encore with with “Ocean” to a backdrop of TVs playing videos of Asbury Park boardwalk. It was a great way to spend Saturday night.
If you are looking for a fun show check out The Front Bottoms on tour now! They are playing in NYC on November 25th at Terminal Five. The show is sold out but there are tickets available on Stub Hub. For more information on The Front Bottoms check out their official website.