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Hop Along played Bowery Ballroom with Radiator Hospital and Des Ark, covered RATM’s “Bombtrack” (pics, video)

photos by Amanda Hatfield, words by Andrew Sacher

Hop Along / Radiator Hospital / Des Ark @ Bowery Ballroom – 12/12/15
Hop Along
Radiator Hospital
Des Ark

Hop Along have had quite the year, getting a lot of love for the great album Painted Shut and playing to some of their biggest crowds ever. On Saturday night (12/12) in NYC they played to another big crowd, headlining a sold-out show at Bowery Ballroom, where they’ve played as an opener more than once. It was the first time I’ve seen them where the new songs actually got more applause than the old ones. “Tibetan Pop Stars” was a great moment as always, but it wasn’t the climax of the set that it usually is. That probably would’ve been “Waitress” or “Sister Cities” at the Bowery show. Or maybe it was their awesome cover of Rage Against the Machine’s “Bombtrack” (video below). My personal favorite song of the set was “Well-dressed.” The way it moves from just Frances and a guitar to a full-band rager, and then brings in the falsetto “oohs,” made for one the night’s most uplifting moments.

Direct support came from Radiator Hospital, who are a great match for Hop Along. Both bands are from Philly, and both exist somewhere between indie rock, folk, pop and punk. Guitarist Cynthia Schemmer also said on stage that Frances from Hop Along and Aimée Argote from openers Des Ark were some of her early inspirations to play music. Rad Hos were great as always, maybe even a little better than I’ve seen them before. And we got a good setlist, with “Cut Your Bangs,” “Our Song,” and plenty more.

Des Ark, who also played Union Pool the next night (12/13), were on first and supporting their recently-released album Everything Dies. I’d never seen them before but they knocked me out right away. Aimée has a killer voice, she’s a great performer, and she’s got a knack for moving from super quiet folk songs to heavy distorted rock seamlessly.

Hop Along also just announced 2016 tour dates, including a few Frances Quinlan solo shows with Barry Johnson of Joyce Manor. All dates are listed, with more pictures, and the video of the “Bombtrack” cover, below…

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Hop Along — 2016 Tour Dates
1/12: Watsonville, CA @ Appleton Grill ^
1/13: San Francisco, CA @ CA The Chapel ^
1/14: Los Angeles, CA @ Center for the Arts Eagle Rock ^
1/15: Ventura, CA @ Avenue Thrift ^
1/24: Columbus, OH @ Double Happiness #
1/25: St. Louis, MO @ Off Broadway #
1/26: Norman, OK @ The Opolis #
1/29: Santa Ana, CA @ The Observatory
1/30: Oakland, CA @ Fox Theater
1/31: Santa Cruz, CA @ The Catalyst
2/2: Reno, NV @ Cargo @ Whitney Peak Hotel
2/3: Bend, OR @ Midtown Ballroom
2/4: Portland, OR @ Crystal Ballroom
2/5: Seattle, WA @ Neptune
2/6: Vancouver, BC @ Venue
2/8: Spokane, WA @ Knitting Factory
2/9: Boise, ID @ Neurolux #
2/11: Denver, CO @ Larimer Lounge #
2/12: Colorado Springs, CO @ The Black Sheep #
2/13: Boulder, CO @ Boulder Theater
2/16: Tempe, AZ @ Marquee Theater
2/17: Flagstaff, AZ @ The Orpheum Theater
2/19: Los Angeles, CA @ The Wiltern
2/20: San Diego, CA @ The Observatory North Park
2/23: Kansas City, MO @ The Riot Room #
2/24: Bloomington, IN @ The Bishop #
2/25: Cleveland, OH @ Grog Shop #

* = w/ Dr. Dog
^ = Frances Quinlan Solo w/ Barry Johnson (Joyce Manor)

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