New Found Glory in Somerville, MA – March 16, 2023

Pop-punk giants, New Found Glory, performed at the sold-out Somerville Theatre in an intimate acoustic performance. The venue provided a unique setting with movies playing downstairs, as the rock concert was under way upstairs. The “Make the Most of It” acoustic tour was kicked off by Nashville-based singer, Leanna Firestone.

Leanna Firestone

Leanna Firestone brought her beautiful guitar chords and vocal talents, along with her adorable quirkiness, to Somerville, MA. From the moment she took the stage, she was sharing personal stories with the crowd who quickly fell in love with her contagious smile. The candid storytelling in her songs is heartfelt and relatable, like the lyrics throughout the single, “You Just Didn’t Like Me That Much” and “Smitten”. She sings, “you snored and it was the most beautiful sound that I’d ever heard, and I’m sure if we ever got old and married it would get on my nerves.” Many of her songs deal with love or past loves, but there were some songs in her set that dealt with heavier topics. “Tourniquet”, as a perfect example, which revolves around one of her parents no longer being in her life. Also, “Least Favorite Only Child” discusses having to move home and feeling like a disappointment to her mother while thinking of things to do to garner the attention she was desperately seeking. Overall it was raw and resonated with the audience based on the exuberant applause she received.

New Found Glory

The headliners were coming out to play at the sold-out Somerville Theatre, in a rare acoustic performance. A notable change to the lineup was Dan O’Connor, of the band Four Year Strong, who filled in on guitar and backing vocals in the absence of Chad Gilbert. The band has been actively raising money and awareness at each show for the type of cancer Gilbert has been battling, Pheochromocytoma. Pheochromocytoma is a rare tumor that forms in the center of one or both of the adrenal glands. Symptoms typically include high blood pressure and headaches, but sometimes no symptoms are present. It is treatable, so everyone is hoping for the best for Gilbert.

Although the band started the night off sitting in chairs, they were immediately giving off the energetic pop-punk vibes the crowd was there to enjoy. Early in the set they played, “Hit or Miss” from the popular self-titled album that came out in 2000. Everyone in the crowd was chanting along and cheering right from the start of their set. They also played the smash hit, “Dressed to Kill” from that album.  

The mushroom rainbow-clad band continued through their set with their biggest all-time hits, “My Friends Over You” and “All Downhill From Here”, and the sold-out room was singing in unison. Around this time bassist Ian Grushka switched to the triangle which had fans cheering as Grushka showed off his enthusiastic percussion abilities.

The night concluded with five well-deserved encores. Three of these encores were done with opener, Leanna Firestone, singing a duet with lead singer, Jordan Pundik. It is safe to say the punk-rock fanbase is still alive in the Boston-area and hopefully we will not have to wait long for their return.

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