Sum 41 and The Interrupters with support from Joey Valence & Brae The Norva, Norfolk, VA (USA) May 19, 2024

    Photography and review by Michael Spencer Photography


    Pop Punk.  Ska Punk. Three chord songs. Catchy lyrics.  Yeah, it’s still a thing. While there are numerous instances of bands that started off in the rebellious genre, most eventually went more to the Pop side and left the punk lifestyle behind. And by rebellious, yes they will throw the trash can in the street, but then they will clean up after themselves, so maybe it’s punk with a purpose.  I was a metalhead and also into punk in its early days.  I did see the original four Ramones live. So, I’ve seen a thing or two.  Tonight, was a pairing of a couple of great bands in this world. It’s a trip down The Warped Tour memory lane for me tonight.

    The first band to open the show was Joey Valence & Brae, a hip-hop duo hailing from Pennsylvania (USA), where Joseph Bertolino and Braedan Lugue met in their freshman year of college and started producing music together.  To date, they have released 23 singles, 1 EP and 2 full length albums.  A good comparison would be The Beastie Boys.  Their live show is full of energy, crowd interaction and acrobatics in the vein of Jump Around, Jump, Jump, Jump. Their set consisted of:

    1. Watch Yo Step
    2. Tanaka
    3. Startafight
    4. Double Jump
    5. Hooligang
    7. Crank It Up
    8. DROP!!
    9. Bussit
    10. Like A Punk
    11. Pump Tactics


    Then, it was time to relive younger years (alright, not that young), but the Warped tour years. An energy filled dynamo that writes and performs some great songs. This was not my first exposure to The Interrupters. To quote their website “When considering Los Angeles outfit The Interrupters, take a moment to kindly forget jargon like [SoCal punk rock] or [next wave ska] or whatever perimeter you want to secure around them.”  This is true, they can be grouped into so many different genres. Regardless of where you attribute their style to, it is fun. The group consists of lead vocalist Aimee Interrupter, and brothers drummer Jesse Bivona, bassist Justin Bivona, and guitarist Kevin Bivona and formed when the brothers met Aimee when they all were working along Tim Armstrong (Rancid) in his Tim Armstrong and Friends band.  And having had the same lineup since their forming in 2011 has had its merits; symmetry, cohesiveness and comfort knowing what someone is going to do when. They came out and kicked the night off with Take Back the Power off their debut album.  It seemed that everybody in the crowd was singing along, including myself, right until I remembered I was there to cover the show. Oops..  I was right back at Warped 2016 where I’d first seen them live. The interaction between the band and the crowd is amazing.  They paused a song when someone found another attendee’s cell phone on the floor in the pit. Once its owner was located, they continued. They frequently hand out guitar picks to the kids and adults on the rail. And at the end of their set, they dropped down in the photo pit to interact with their fans, sign memorabilia, take selfies, etc. A class act, a great show and one you need to experience to understand. Their setlist for the night was:

    1. Take Back the Power
    2. Title Holder
    3. White Noise
    4. Judge Not (Bob Marley cover) (Followed by a snippet of “Your Love” by the Outfield.)
    5. On a Turntable
    6. In the Mirror
    7. Kiss the Ground
    8. Raised by Wolves
    9. She Got Arrested
    10. Play Video
    11. Bad Guy (Billie Eilish cover)
    12. Gave You Everything
    13. She’s Kerosene


    You can catch them in Europe, Canada and the USA on tour


    And then, it was time for Sum 41. The band was formed in Canada in 1996 and currently consists of Deryck Whibley (lead vocals, guitars, keyboards), Dave Baksh (lead guitar, backing vocals), Jason McCaslin (bass, backing vocals), Tom Thacker (guitars, keyboards, backing vocals), and Frank Zummo (drums, occasional backing vocals).  They have been classified as pop-punk, skate punk, punk, rock, alternative, melodic hardcore, alternative rock. Whatever genre you want to put them in, they have been fun over the years through Warped Tour shows as well as tours supporting their 8 full length album catalog.  Tonight, they are here for the Tour of the Setting Sum, as they have said that this is it for them. The end of the road. The final tour.  And if that is the case, they are going out with a bang. The show tonight was moved from another venue, and the new venue doesn’t allow pyrotechnics due to it being an older wooden building. Okay, no pyro. But they made up for it with an extended setlist and quite the confetti and streamer special effects.  They hit the stage and opened with Motivation, followed by The Hell song and Over My Head (Better Off Dead) as part of their 24-song set. You could see the chemistry of the band and the years of experience by how well they played songs that are deep in their catalog; veteran musicians doing what they do best. Will this be the end of a pop punk legend? Who can say? There are bands out there that have been on farewell tours for a decade or longer, so time will tell. For tonight’s show, the setlist was:

    1. Motivation ((+ 88 outro))
    2. The Hell Song
    3. Over My Head (Better Off Dead)
    4. No Reason
    5. Underclass Hero
    6. Some Say
    7. Landmines
    8. Dopamine
    9. We’re All to Blame
    10. Walking Disaster
    11. With Me
    12. Makes No Difference
    13. My Direction / No Brains / All Messed Up
    14. Preparasi a salire
    15. Rise Up
    16. We Will Rock You (Queen cover)
    17. Ring of Fire (Merle Kilgore cover)
    18. Pieces
    19. What We’re All About
    20. Fat Lip
    21. Still Waiting
    22. Summer
    23. Waiting on a Twist of Fate
    24. In Too Deep
    25. So Long Goodbye

    SUM 41

    While they may in fact call it quits after this tour, you can catch them in Europe, Canada, the USA before the tour wraps up in Toronto in January.

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