There’s something special in the air at a hometown show; a radiating magic that welcomes artists back with open arms and moving bodies, an ode to where it all started. That exact magic was ever present at the most recent headlining tour hometown show of New Jersey’s own power pop/punk/bubble grunge four-piece Pollyanna at The Saint in Asbury Park on December 11th.
The local bar-turned venue was filled with equal parts old friends and new fanatics of the band, but no matter how long each group had been following the band’s music career, everyone in the room came with one common goal in mind: to watch Pollyanna tear up the stage. And they did just that.
“Pollyanna has this distinct flare, a fierceness that pumps energy into every person embracing their performance. And I don’t use the word ‘performance’ lightly.”
With every vigorous kick of a limb and every belt into the microphone, the band burst a stream of intensity into the crowd that inspired everyone to follow their lead. The crowd bounced that energy right back on stage, each party passionately fueling the other in an engaging and lively symbiotic relationship. This was especially evident as Pollyanna’s very own hype-man, Santa, was featured in a song and surfed the crowd as they caught him and carried him across the room with their collective might. ‘Tis the season!
Pollyanna ripped through their set of songs, most of which came from their latest 2022 full-length release “Slime,” an album that captures the fresh, fun, and past-paced Pollyanna live experience in a 12-song recording. Picks like SLUT, Pixie, and Okay. are catchy yet gritty sing-along anthems, giving everyone the perfect opportunity to jump, scream, point, and move however these songs motivated them to. The band also snuck a couple older tunes in as a thank you to everyone who watched them grow from the beginning.
Attendees were nowhere near short of gripping live music waiting for Pollyanna to take the stage. Last minute add-ons Fox Teeth brought the definition of Jersey emo alive and crushed it considering how little time they had to prepare (we’re talking ‘received a call day of show and somehow pulled it off’ last minute – the show must go on!).
Not Yer Baby followed and proved their ‘dance punk’ genre title by creating a dance party we all would have happily RSVP’d to.
Lastly, Long Beach residents Family Dinner prepped the crowd for Pollyanna to follow and showed Jersey what poppy grunge groove from New York is made of. Fans of both bands were in for a pleasant surprise when Natalie from Family Dinner hopped on stage to accompany Jill from Pollyanna for a tag-teamed vocal effort.
Show Date: 12.11.22 | Asbury Park, NJ @ The Saint