“Pop punk’s not dead,” their fans cry. Perhaps not — it’s my favorite genre of music — and legendary quintet New Found Glory did its best to prove that at Cincinnati’s Bogart’s club Friday night.
With opening act H2O (who I did not get to see) and co-headliner Alkaline Trio, the venue was absolutely packed. Alkaline Trio roared through its set, delivering a high-energy performance quickly moving from one song to the next, and guitarist Matt Skiba only briefly broke to sip from a bottle of water and introduce songs to the crowd. The live sound mix was also slightly off, with the bass too loud and the vocals a little bit quiet, but the band was in top form. Although I’ve never actually sought out an Alkaline Trio show, this is the second time I’ve seen them play live, the first being Warped Tour 2010.
But we were waiting for the next act, and the crowd went nuts as the lights dimmed and New Found Glory launched into “All Downhill From Here.” The next hour was pure pop punk heaven, with Chad Gilbert and Jordan Pundik leading the band through hits like “Don’t Let Her Pull You Down,” “Dressed to Kill” and “My Friends Over You.” The band also played its new single “Connect the Dots,” which resulted in a louder-than-expected applause.
And just when we thought the show was over, the band returned to the stage to play my personal favorite New Found Glory song, “The Story so Far.” It was a kick-ass end to one of the most energetic pop punk shows I’ve ever seen. New Found Glory is proving that pop punk is still alive and well.