Thursday night New Jersey/Upstate New York’s own Pinegrove made a tour stop at The Novo at LA Live. The third night of the second half of the tour for their latest release 11:11 (Rough Trade) saw the band roll through twenty-something songs set featuring every song from the new album and plenty of classics.
Highlights included rousing “Alaska”, the first song of the night and the second song on the new album, “Rings” (From 2018’s Skylight), and the one that really brought the whole crowd together, “Old Friends” (From 2016’s Cardinal). The band has a real talent for making even large venues (singer Evan Stephens Hall remarked that the Novo was the tallest, highest-vaulted ceilinged, room they’d ever played) feel very intimate. Hall’s voice is so riveting that everything else kind of fades away and his lyrics dance through your brain while hitting your heart with real emotional jabs and before you know it you’re feeling the need to apologize to an old friend and forgive an ex and maybe call your Mom. At least that’s what happened to me, I’m sure everyone has their own reaction. Before the show my pal Sara excitedly texted “We’re gonna get sad and twangy” and that’s exactly what happened. Good sad. Like I can’t wait to see them next time and do it all over again.
Openers were Seattle’s indie-folk Drench Fries, treading similar ground to Pinegrove but in their own way, and New York’s Peaer taking things in more of a prog-indie direction. Definitely the jazziest guitar chords of the night.
Words and photos by Tim Aarons