words & photos by Bryan Bruchman
"We travel the world all year and then we always come home for Christmas, we're never away at this time of year, so it's about coming home to New Jersey for the holidays, getting back together with our family and friends,'' Bouncing Souls bassist Bryan Kienlen recently told Metromix Jersey Shore.The Bouncing Souls kicked off their sold out, four night, holiday run at the Stone Pony in Asbury Park, NJ on Saturday night (12/26). I missed the first band, Detournement, but caught openers Blacklisted and Black Train Jack . Before the 20th anniversary-celebrating headliners began, the capacity crowd sang along in (loud) unison to Bruce Springsteen's "Born To Run," punctuated a few times through by a capella renditions of "Ole!" and "E.C.F.U." (neither of which was actually played by the band during their set).
For many, this is the time of year when we surround ourselves with our loved ones, and it's no different for the Souls, Jersey punk icons who originally hailed from Basking Ridge before making their name on the New Brunswick punk scene and who now call the Jersey Shore home.
"My entire family's coming on the 26th, I'm sure some other band parents will be at some shows,'' Kienlen said. "(There will be) actual family and then like the Bouncing Souls family, and that extends all the way, that's everybody who goes to shows in Jersey and everybody around here in the metro area. This is home for us on a show level as well, it's like the home crowd, and so that's the vibe of the thing.'' [MyCentralJersey]
It was a big and excited (but notably friendly and courteous) crowd, consisting mostly of longtime Souls fans and friends of the band. It served as a good start to the run of 2009 Home For The Holidays shows for the band who are entering their 3rd decade together (the final show, on Tuesday, features excellent openers Screaming Females and the afterparty will be DJ'ed by Souls song namesake, Lamar Vannoy!).
The show started early (7pm doors, first band at 7:30!) and was done before midnight. There was an afterparty down the street at Asbury Lanes that I'm going to bet was pretty awesome (The Measure (SA) were playing, so that's a good sign) but unfortunately I couldn't make it to that.
More pictures from the first of four shows (which continue tonight), including one of the fan-created setlist, below...
Black Train Jack