Tsunami Bomb - Live in Philadelphia (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Tsunami Bomb

Live in Philadelphia (2018)

live show

Now that they’ve concluded the “reunion” phase of their current incarnation, Tsunami Bomb is now moving forward as an contemporary unit, composed of the band’s original, original members and some crew from the mid-period and a few newer people, including singer Kate Jacobi. At their May 16, 2018, Philly show, the band pulled the “reverse” reunion strategy, if you will, and it was the perfect power play.

That is, when bands solidify, either after a hiatus or a few years of being together, they often become more polished, more clean, and more controlled. To their credit, Tsunami Bomb did not do this. Rather, perhaps because they were sometimes lumped in with “pop punk” in days of you’re, now, Tsunami Bomb is getting down and dirty and, dare I say, somewhat savage?

O.G. members Dom Davi (bass) and Oobliette (keyboards/vox) seemed to be the driving force behind this strategy. Throughout the show, Davi brought an old school punk physically to his playing, whipping his body around and kicking at invisible targets while smashing out combustible bass lines. Oobliette too broght some real claws to the band, adding some more 77 la style backing vocals as well as smashing the keyboards more than playing them. When she took the mic on a few tracks, she jumped into the crowd and rough housed the place up. (Her haunted house meets B-52s keyboards was also on point.)

Interestingly, singer Jacobi seemed to evolve from her last Philly performance, a year ago. Back then, Jacobi seemed to act as a counter point to Oobliette- the keyboardist being a the ground level attacker with Jacobi countering that with a more practice, pop vocal. Yet, at the Philly show, Jacobi likewise seemed energized by Oobliettes strike and often found herself in the crowd howling and hooping it up with her partner-in-crime.

All of the raw-style was spread across the bands big hits, each which got a spin. Concert closer “Lemonade” really swung with its stomping beat. “Irish Boys” slammed forward at a thrash cadence. As a treat, the band blasted out three new songs, each of which seemed to be among the hardest and fastest of the band’s career. This was good. Tsunami Bomb has a pretty incredible roster of talent in its tanks, and while the cliché is that “anyone can do punk rock,” sometimes the naturally gifted can do it way better then most other people. That is to say, instead of using, say Jacobi’s vocal range or Davi’s powerful strike, as a vehicle for showing off, instead, the band focused on the three Fs: fundamentals, fundamentals, fundamentals. That’s what makes a punk song legendary and as their Philly sow demonstrated, Tsunami Bomb, more and more, are putting their fundamentals to good use.

Before the California band took the stage, local Philly pop-punkers Teenage Bigfoot played a rousing set of catchy tunes. They’ve been developing for a little while now and as newish song “A song for Icarus” proved, they are well on their way to do something both catchy and unique.

The show opened with Philly/West Chester mainstays Goddamnit who have been kicking it for about six years. More and more, the band has been refining their high energy, gruff melodic punk and they’ve got it down to a science at this point. The band was well received by the audience and with good cause. If you had your heart on your sleeve, you would have met a band that spoke directly to it.