The Bros and Broettes were out in force for this epic night of SoCal punk. The beers were flowing from about the moment I walked into the venue, and based on the amount of people I saw double fisting, I knew it was going to be an interesting night.
To my surprise, there was a headliner-worthy crowd there for openers, Runaway Kids. I’d never heard of them before, but was really stoked on them right from the start. They had a very 90s Warped Tour feel. I about died when I realized their guitar player was wearing a Cher shirt and a camouflage hat. They were quite possibly a perfect opener for Pennywise and really the whole tour. Their set got everyone pumped for the rest of the night’s legendary lineup.
Next up was Unwritten Law. I’ve been a fan of these guys for a long time, and I was excited to get a second chance at photographing them and of course seeing them again. This time was just as mind bogglingly good as the last but with a much larger and rowdier crowd. The crowd lost their minds for “Seeing Red” and everybody was singing along. They played one of their first songs “Teenage Suicide” and a massive pit erupted to the point where beers and water bottles were flying through the air. This time around the bass player was a different gentleman but man did he shred, also he had on a rad Dead Kennedys shirt. At this point the entire venue was packed wall to wall and yet somehow people were still getting beers in preparation for Strung Out.
This would only be my second time seeing Strung Out. The first time was in May at Punk Rock Bowling. Their live show is unreal and they were my favorite band to shoot at PRB this year (besides maybe The Night Birds). So as I was expecting, this set was high energy and crazy hard to keep up with. After I was done taking my photos I had a really hard time finding a spot where I could see the band unless they were right on the edge of stage. I could see the crowd just fine though, and there was literally a constant pit, I’m not even sure it stopped in between songs. Strung Out was the final piece of the puzzle to get this packed crowd ready for our headliners, Pennywise.
The time had come for Pennywise to play their 1995 album About Time in its entirety. I was pleasantly surprised to see at the bottom of their set list a few crowd favorites after the album tracks were finished. Very frequently, when you go to shows people show up late because all they want to see is the headliner or people show up for one of the openers or direct support and then all of a sudden huge chunks of the crowd are missing. This show was different, from about Unwritten Law on, the crowd was massive and packed in like sardines.
But once Pennywise started ripping through these classic songs, you knew who this crowd was here to see. Somewhere in the middle of their set, it was all kind of a blur to me, they did talk some smack about our dear president-elect and dedicated a song to him. Later they mentioned it was the last night of the tour and did the usual thank yous and head nods. And to end the night they played….you guessed it “Bro Hymn.” But on this very special night and it being the last night of the tour they invited the crowd and friends to join them on stage for it. After all the whoas were had and the pit finally cleared out, it was a crazy fun show and I’m sure many people ended up with massive hangovers in the aftermath.
-Anthony Constantine | https://www.facebook.com/anthonycphotography