I remember my first time seeing PUP over 4 years ago at a small, currently defunct, comedy and concert venue in midtown St. Louis. So it should speak volumes that they went from a supporting act to headlining at one of the most popular venues in St. Louis. In fact the entire evening, accompanied by Potty Mouth and Illuminati Hotties, was a demonstration that energy and life still flows through the punk community.
Potty Mouth’s infectious and nostalgic pop punk warmed the crowd up by blasting them back to the late 90’s. The band offered up a set full of songs that would have fit right in on a mixtape curated by Katarina Stratford.
Illuminati Hotties delivered on the whimsy with their lighthearted brand of “tenderpunk”. Frontwoman and project mastermind Sarah Tudzin alternated between poised and playful and her mischievous demeanor was tantalizing to watch.
One of the things that has endeared fans to PUP for so long is the reverberating aura of earnestness and authenticity. Whether it’s through their sound, their lyrics, or their stage presence the gents in PUP have bled and sweat vulnerability making them a bastion of the independent music scene and the poster boys of DIY punk ethos. After three albums later, numerous accolades, and an ever growing fanbase this is still the truth. Babcock, Sladkowksi, Chumak, and Mykula were seasoned punk rock commanders from the stage, letting their electricity pour out into the crowd only to get caught up in an infinite feedback loop of energy.
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