New Found Glory have released a live record. Finally!
The pop punk giants released their first studio album over fifteen years ago and it’s a little surprising that October 2013 marks the first time the band has ever put out a live offering. One spin through Kill it Live will make you wonder what took them so long. The raw energy and passion that are inseparable from pop punk music are on display in a major way in each of the 17 tracks on the record. A cool bonus to Kill it Live is that in addition to a full live set, NFG includes three brand new songs on the record, giving fans a sense of what to expect from the band in the near future.
On March 27th and 28th of 2013, New Found Glory played to two sold-out crowds at the legendary Chain Reaction in Anaheim, CA. The sets were recorded and compiled into the aptly titled Kill it Live, and kill it they did. The album was released through guitarist Chad Gilbert’s record label Violently Happy Records in collaboration with Bridge Nine Records.
New Found Glory is such a great live band. Their set is so energetic and full of life. Each song exudes energy and feeling. It’s impossible not to get into a New Found Glory show and this record is no different. The album kicks in without missing a beat with the song “Intro” from Catalyst. “Intro” is roughly 40 seconds of pure punk awesomeness before giving way to “Understatement” from the band’s most popular record Sticks and Stones. They set the bar high when it comes to the energy level right from the onset and don’t let up until it’s over. The track listing is a balanced mixture of songs from each of the band’s studio albums with particular emphasis on fan favorite songs and sing-alongs. The “last song” of the set is “Hit or Miss,” leaving the crowd in a frenzy. The band walks off stage, leading to a “One more song!” chant that is answered with a fantastic curtain call. NFG reemerges for three more songs: “Truth of My Youth,” “The Story So Far,” and, of course, ends the set for real with “My Friends Over You,” their biggest song to date. The album is full of crowd interaction, singing along and everything you would expect from a New Found Glory show, including cool variations and extensions of the songs.
After the live set, there are the three brand new (studio) songs; “I Want to Believe,” “Connect the Dots,” and “First Bite.” The new tracks are classically New Found Glory without sounding stale or contrived. “First Bite” has an awesome, catchy chorus and an interesting breakdown on the bridge but the standout of the three new ones, however, is definitely “Connect the Dots.”
Midway through the set, guitarist Chad Gilbert tells the fans “These shows are the reason why we wanted to be a band.” It’s clear that he’s telling the truth. You can tell just by listening what a great time everyone in the room is having, from band to fans. New Found Glory love what they do and they deserve a massive amount of respect for still being relevant today. Not many bands in our scene last 15+ years, let alone doing so with the same lineup and without hiatus or drama.
It took over a decade (nearly two) for us to get a New Found Glory live record, but hey – better late than never. And it does not disappoint. Every song kicks ass and it’s impossible not to have a good time listening to Kill it Live. It feels like you’re right there in the pit screaming “I’d still pick my friends over you!” A few standout tracks are “Don’t Let Her Pull You Down,” “Coming Home,” “Hit or Miss,” “Truth of My Youth,” “The Story So Far,” and “My Friends Over You.” Definitely, definitely check out Kill it Live.