On a hot and sunny May 1, LA pop-punk powerhouse Bleached brought the sounds of punky, lovelorn teen angst to Upper Sproul as the last SUPERB show of the spring semester. Though the band was set to be the first SUPERB show, heavy rain pushed their performance to a sweet spot in the semester, just before dead week and after most people have finished classes. Regardless, the duo’s special brand of pop-punk was a fitting end to such a warm day in the Bay.
The show opened with local band Hot Flash Heat Wave—whose name is completely indicative of the day’s weather—and their fusion of garage and surf rock, playing for a crowd that mostly took to the grassy lawn in front of Sproul Hall. Their music drew up images of lazy days at the beach, basking in the sun as the ocean breeze wafts through. This chill vibe, while very present during their set, was unfortunately overshadowed by the baking heat of the day, and the crowd did their swaying and dancing from a distance.
Bleached, which consists of SF-raised but LA-based sisters Jennifer & Jessie Clavin, spoke to the Daily Cal last May before a show in the city, but during their set this time around were met with cheers and excitement for their first show at UC Berkeley.
In between songs, the band expressed their sadness at not being able to play earlier in the semester due to the rain, and even suggested if there wasn’t the threat of electrocution, they could “have played on surfboards,” as Jessie put it. Along with recalling a story their mom had told them of when the folk band America played on campus in the 70s and a shared disdain of the uncomfortably warm day, the Clavin sisters put on a show that attracted fans of all kinds. Well-dressed hipsters, hardcore punks and intrigued students filled Upper Sproul, head-bobbing to the band’s noisy pop-punk and moshing for brief stints before tiring out from the heat, though most people danced in place and stopped every once in a while to hydrate.
Both Bleached and Hot Flash Heat Wave played sets that were a hell of a lot of fun to dance around to, and hats off to SUPERB for bringing two amazing bands to campus to commemorate the end of a great semester lineup.
Contact Youssef Shokry at [email protected].