Pennywise - Live in São Paulo (Cover Artwork)


Live in São Paulo (2012)

live show

Only three days after the announcement that Jim Lindberg was back in Pennywise, the vocalist made his comeback at the Wros Fest in São Paulo, Brazil. Interestingly enough, Lindberg had left the band years ago after refusing to tour South America, which was the last straw in their already damaged relationship. But no grudges were held and Lindberg was very well received by the 4,000 people present at Espaço das Américas last Sunday night. After several concerts in Brazil, Pennywise has a large fanbase in the country that was anxious to see the band once more, either with Zoli Teglas or Lindberg.

Following an energetic performance by Anti-Flag, the foursome took the large stage opening the show with "Wouldn't It Be Nice," immediately leading to the formation of a huge circle pit and loud singalong by the audience, mixed between untiring youngsters and nostalgic 30-somethings of both genders. The setlist compiled songs from their debut until Land Of The Free?, as their last album with Teglas, All or Nothing, was completely ignored. Whether this was because of an absolute lack of time for Lindberg to learn the new songs or a sign that the reformed band will ignore this year's release for now on is open to speculation.

The fact is that classic tunes like "Homesick," "Same Old Story" and "Pennywise" were very well received but the post Jason Thirsk era was privileged as "Fight Till You Die," "Society," "Broken," "What If I," "Date With Destiny," "You'll Never Make It," "My Own Country," "Can't Believe," "My Own Way," "Alien," "Fuck Authority" and "My God" were all played to great response by the audience. Their classic cover of Ben E King's "Stand By Me" was not forgotten either and of course "Bro Hymn" closed the presentation with a lot of singalong from the fans. All according to the script, but very well done and exciting enough since the songs speak for themselves.

As for the band's onstage performance, unlike Anti-Flag before them and Rise Against after, Pennywise didn't rely on rehearsed stage moves and acrobatics and their somewhat advanced age did show, but the lack of physical mobility didn't take anything away from their presentation and the crowd were just too excited singing, jumping, pushing and shoving to care. Lindberg's singing was very good and Fletcher Dragge, Randy Bradbury and Byron McMakin were very comfortable as their experience and absolute control of the situation showed, despite the poor quality of the sound, especially for those further from the stage. That, of course, should be put on the production's account rather than the band's though. In two words: great comeback.