The Bombpops/Murderland - Live In Los Angeles (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

The Bombpops / Murderland

Live In Los Angeles (2018)

Live Show

On Saturday, April 14, 2018 I made my way to The Redwood Bar & Grill for the first time in what seemed like quite a while to see some of LA’s finest local pop punk bands. I had heard plenty of good things about Fullerton, CA’s Odd Robot and Los Angeles’s Murderland always put on an impressive performance. Most importantly though, this was The Bombpops’ record release show for their newly releases 7-inch Dear Beer.

Of the three bands playing, Odd Robot was the one I was least familiar with. If a band that I haven’t listened to is playing a show I’ll be going to, I sometimes don’t listen to their studio work and go into their performance “cold.” Odd Robot put on a very solid performance of pop punk and power pop tunes. The up-and-comers played songs like “Vonnegut,” “A Late Night Panic” and “Do You Ever Do?” The three-piece sort of changed their sound up a bit when they played the tune “Tired Of Waking Up,” which they even admitted had an Elvis Costello vibe.

Up next was Murderland. This band is severely underrated when it comes to the general punk scene. People in LA specifically know they are gem in the scene whether it is their recorded material or their live show. The horror themed five-piece never seem to put on a bad show. If anything, they always put on a spectacular performance and make it look very easy. They’re that tight of a group when they are on stage. The band performed a good mixture of older songs like, “Partner In Crime” and “C.C.L.S.” and newer material from their 2016 album Splitsville, such as the title track, “Beach Bunny Babylon” and “Whatever Happened.” Even Poli Van Dam of The Bombpops got on stage to sing her part during the murder anthem “Another Homicide,” which was a very cool highlight. They also played a very cool and guitar-heavy cover of “The Heat Is On” by Glenn Frey. Lead singer Mike Kinshella’s vocals really shined as did his shenanigans. Because the band took up most of the stage, Mike spent the majority of the set on the main floor with the audience. He would run into the crowd and run to the booths and mess with the people that were sitting in them. It was hilarious. And while all this was going on the band sounded great from start to finish.

And then finally, The Bombpops took the stage. I’ve seen the band plenty of times perform at this very intimate venue before. Believe it or not this is the third record release show of theirs that I have been to and all of them were at The Redwood. I was there for their Can Of Worms 7-inch release show in 2015, their Fear Of Missing Out release show in 2017 and now their Dear Bear 7-inch release show. I have to say that this was probably the best I have seen The Bombpops perform. You could tell they were much more confident being on stage and they were much tighter through out their set than I have seen at their previous shows. It was also clear that they were have a blast up there, as was the tightly packed crowd in the bar. Just like Murderland before them, The Bombpops' set list also had a good amount of new and old material . You can see the full list below, but some of the more notable songs from their recent material was “Be Sweet,” “Brake Lights” and “Sweet For Sorrow.” Some of the older tunes that they played were tracks like “Outta Hand” and “Breathe.” Anytime the band plays “Outta Hand” is a special treat. It is still one of their most intense and hard-hitting tunes. During the pretty massive guitar solo guitarist/vocalist Poli Van Dam walked out into the center of the crowd and began to shred on her guitar. The Bombpops also played some of their newest songs such as “Dear Beer” and “Turn Up The Thermostat,” which sounded quite good live. What was also pretty impressive was that the band put on such a great performance even after drummer Josh Lewis played throughout all of Murderland’s set before hand. But what also made the show was the band members’ hilarious/incredibly gross between-song banter (I’ll just leave it at that). Just as The Bombpops finished their set, there was quite a bit of begging from the crowd for one more song. They didn’t bother leaving the stage and instead just jumped into the ever-catchy tune “Can O’ Worms” for the encore to finish off the night.

It is always a pleasure to see The Bombpops perform at their “second home,” The Redwood Bar & Grill. Unfortunately, there haven't been that many punk shows there in the last year or so. It is the closest that the proper Los Angeles area had to a popular DIY venue and it’s where I started my involvement in the punk scene after moving back to Los Angeles where I discovered all sorts of other awesome local bands. And with closure of VLHS in Pomona the same thing has begun to happen to the greater SoCal area. I have to say though, being back at The Redwood and seeing all of these bands was a ton of fun. The Bombpops were great, Murderland was outrageous and fantastic and Odd Robot was a cool find. It would be very hard to argue that this was not a very successful record release show.

The Bombpops’ Set List:


Watch Me Fold



Be Sweet


Brake Lights

Outta Hand

I Can’t


Dear Beer


CA In July


Sweet For Sorrow

Turn Up The Thermostat

Marry. Fuck. Kill.

All In A Day’s Lurk



Can O’ Worms

You can see pictures from the show on the Punknews Instagram.