Still out in support of last year’s stellar new full-length, Bark Your Head Off, Dog, Philadelphia punk and emo infused indie rock outfit Hop Along return to Nashville for the second year in a row tonight, July 13 at The Basement East, on the heels of an opening-day set at Louisville’s Forecastle Fest. With support from another longtime favorite, fellow Philadelphian, indie pop project Kississippi, this is, without a doubt, one of July’s most essential shows, and an inspired pairing of two genre-bending, buzzworthy acts. Tickets are still available right here, so snag ‘em now and read on for more about the show!
Led by frontwoman Frances Quinlan, Hop Along (then known as Hop Along, Queen Ansleis) formed in the mid-00s, initially conceived as a freak folk solo project, before morphing into a full band a few years later and settling on the punk, emo, and grunge tinged flavor of alternative rock they play today. Hop Along’s first full-band album, Get Disowned, arrived in 2012, immediately grabbing the attention of the music press, and resonating with a wide range of fans, especially in the punk world, leading to a deal with Saddle Creek, the tastemaking midwestern label whose roster often lands in the midsection of folk, indie, and artsy punk. Versatile enough to tour with everyone from Modest Mouse to Dr. Dog to mewithoutYou, the group’s phenomenal, breakthrough 2015 effort, Painted Shut, further boosted their presence and landed on numerous year-end lists, featuring a more focused, indie rock rooted sound with personal and effective songwriting. Their latest album, last year’s Bark Your Head Off, Dog, further builds on the last record’s template and feels even more refined and confident, rich with dense, literary and story-driven lyricism, eclectic and often surprising musical turns, and a resonate, raw effectiveness which soars in their energetic, magnetic, and engaging live show. Though Hop Along last played Music City shortly after their latest LP’s release, now that they’ve been sitting with it for a year, we suspect an even more rich and refined presentation of their latest material, along with plenty of old favorites. If you won’t be in Kentucky to catch them at Forecastle, Hop Along’s Nashville return is a must-see weekend show!
We’ve been huge fans of Philadelphia’s Kississippi since they first sprung onto the scene in 2014, at the time a more sparse, folk-tinged indie project made up of Zoë Reynolds with Colin Kupson, who she’d met on Tinder and subsequently recruited to record early demos and DIY efforts. While 2014 debut EP I Can Feel You in My Hair Still showed signs of promise, it was 2015 followup We Have No Future, We’re All Doomed, a more fleshed-out effort, that earned the pair broader acclaim, becoming darlings of the hip music press and proceeding to tour, before formally parting ways in 2016. The project always felt most anchored around Reynolds, however, and, newly solo, she revamped the Kississippi moniker to adopt a more full-band, electric, indie pop sound, calling back to her emo and indie punk roots, and even briefly singing to punk label SideOneDummy (a restructuring of personnel caused them to part ways amicably), before independently releasing her highly-anticipated full-length debut, Sunset Blush, last year. Fully embraced by the substantive intersection of emo, indie, and punk, Kississippi has shared the stage in recent years with acts like Dashboard Confessional, Tancerd, Foxing, and Have Mercy, still maintaining a DIY ethos, while also becoming a must-know act for fans of earnest, captivating, and pop accessible indie rock. Don’t miss her set!
Hop Along and Kississippi will perform Saturday, July 13 at The Basement East. The show is 18+, begins at 9 p.m. (doors at 8 p.m.), and tickets are available to purchase for $20.