Green Day ends Sea.Hear.Now at Asbury Park in style
It was a punk rock splash.
Green Day closed out the two-day Sea.Hear.Now festival with a polished punk rock ensemble on Sunday, September 18 on the beach at Asbury Park.
“…It’s the end of summer,” frontman Billie Joe Armstrong said. “We’ll dive lean after this.”
The San Francisco Bay Area band, who are inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, played a 90-minute career that emphasized fun and showmanship. There were pyrotechnics, flames and impressive visuals projected onto three large screens.
Armstrong’s stage profile is a mix of PT Barnum, Johnny Rotten and Eddie Cochran. Yes, he played his guitar behind his head on the band’s hit “When I Come Around.”
Speaking of guitars, Armstrong asked a fan to come up on stage and play one for the song “Knowledge.” Young Luke looked the part, dressed in black with a red tie and blond hair. He succeeded and was able to keep the guitar too.
“You can keep the guitar kid because it’s all downhill from here,” Armstrong joked.
Armstrong is a natural onstage and his bandmates are excellent players. Much of Green Day’s sound is Mike Dirnt’s percussive bass playing, and drummer Tre Cool plays some of rock’s sharpest fills and rolls.
The songs explored alienation, anxiety, and frustration with middle-class conformity. But rather than delivering the message with a sneer, they do it with a smile most of the time.
After:Bruce Springsteen photography, Stevie Nicks sings Sea.Hear.Now choir on Saturday
In addition to the three main members, there are several musicians on stage, including a saxophonist. They have a 30-year history at Asbury Park, and many fans in the audience seemed to have been on board with the band for a long time. The poignancy of “Wake Me Up When September Ends,” released on “American Idiot” in 2005, grew, and his performance on Saturday was emotional.
Alas, there was no skinny dipping – at least the band didn’t hint at the 35,000 people in attendance.
The Sea.Hear.Now festival featured music on three stages, art and surfing over two days on Saturday, September 17 and Sunday at the city’s North Beach and Bradley Park. Longtime Fleetwood Mac member Stevie Nicks was the headliner on Saturday. Other artists include Boy George and Culture Club, My Morning Jacket, Billy Strings, Cage the Elephant and Gary Clark Jr.
As in previous years, there was a strong female presence on the festival stages. Courtney Barnett from Australia delivered punk-style brevity with a little more refinement. Annie DiRusso played disarmingly edgy indie rock, and Celisse hit some mesmerizing old soul notes on guitar and vocals during her Saturday set at the festival — and the late Sea.Hear.Now show that night at the Stone. Pony.
“I will never mispronounce his name again,” said King of Tangiers Blues Band.
After:Sea.Hear.Now rocks Asbury Park beach
Fletcher, a Wall native known for her edgy pop hit “Becky’s So Hot,” played a more than engaging set on Saturday. Her Capitol Records debut album, “Girl of My Dreams,” was released on Friday, September 16.
“I’m so excited to be here. I’ve dreamed of playing this festival all my life,” said Fletcher, 28, of Sea.Hear.Now, who debuted in 2018. of familiar faces in the crowd, and it’s the coolest, weirdest, craziest thing I’ve ever done.
After:Green Day, Stevie Nicks and Asbury Park star in Sea.Hear.Now
Fletcher, who made her stage debut at The Saint in Asbury Park, said she had “a ton of sound issues”, but that didn’t stop her from having her Jersey moment. She called out to her parents and family members on stage as she performed Bruce Springsteen’s “I’m On Fire” and a new song, “Maybe It’s the Jersey in Me.”
“I’m a Jersey girl who had a really big dream – and I can’t believe I’m here,” Fletcher said.
Subscribe to app.com for the latest news on the New Jersey music scene.
Jersey Shore native Chris Jordan covers music and entertainment for USA Today Network New Jersey. Contact him at @chrisfhjordan; [email protected]