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Patriot Press

The student news site of Freehold Township High School

Patriot Press

The student news site of Freehold Township High School

Patriot Press


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Back at the Beach for SeaHearNow


On the weekend of September 16th and 17th, I was back at Asbury Park for my second year at the Sea.Hear.Now music festival. And while last year I raved about how amazing the experience was, I can confidently say that this year was even better. 

Saturday started back at the ocean themed front gates where I met up with some of my friends, including FTHS seniors Sofia Colorado, Jack Beja, and Lilah Matthews, as well as junior Leah Rutledge. Once we entered the festival, we had already made a plan: we would get as close to the stage as possible for the Killers and Greta Van Fleet. 

Hours before Greta Van Fleet even went on stage, we spent time either resting or exploring the festival grounds. We quickly ate some Island Noodles and trekked down to the beach, where Sheryl Crow had just finished her act. While the crowd left the beach, we made our way to the front. We kept moving forward to try and get closer to the stage. Our group was split up for a bit, but we would eventually all recoup before the Killers. Sitting on the sand, we waited for GVF to come on.

The energy for Greta Van Fleet was surreal. The band itself was also amazing. Their set was only an hour long, yet I still left a fan. Guitarist Jake Kiszka played a guitar solo that was over five minutes long, with pyrotechnics making his performance one to not forget. My favorite moments of the set had to be during “Meeting The Master”, where lead vocalist Josh Kiszka stood alone on stage only with his brother who played the acoustic guitar. The quiet moment completely contrasts my other favorite moment, during their biggest hit  “Highway Tune”. Josh extended the song by repeating the chorus and encouraged the crowd to keep the energy high until the end. Once GVF left the stage, we pushed up even further and were in shock to see just how close we had gotten. Our group remet and we soon realized that in under an hour we would be singing along to songs like “Somebody Told Me” and perhaps the most famous of all, “Mr. Brightside”. 

A few minutes after nine pm, the lights began to dim. The crowd was screaming and buzzing with excitement. That excitement would only be amplified once everyone heard the opening notes of “Mr. Brightside”. Playing their most popular song first was a risky move by The Killers, but nothing will ever be able to beat the energy in the crowd during the song.

The Killers put on an amazing show, one that I was lucky enough to experience only twenty or so feet away from the stage. Some highlights included the songs, “Somebody Told Me”, “Human”, and “Dying Breed”. The set had a perfect mix of slower and more emotional songs compared to their hits like the aforementioned “Mr. Brightside”. Finishing off their set with “When You Were Young”, lead singer Brandon Flowers let the crowd sing along and the band bid their final farewell.

The Killers put on an amazing show, and Saturday was an incredible start to the festival, but I was definitely excited to rest before the next day. 

After necessary sleep, Sunday had arrived, which has consistently been the hardest day of the festival to get through simply due to exhaustion. Minus my tired state, I was excited to be back on festival grounds, this time with Jack, Lilah, and Sophia Briggs, a Junior at FTHS. 

We all got to the festival a bit later than Saturday, and made sure to rest as much as possible before our final trek down to the beach.

After our final meal of the night, we walked towards the main stage during the Beach Boys. While we spent most of their set trying to position ourselves closer to the stage, I still enjoyed hearing familiar songs like “Kokomo” and “Wouldn’t It Be Nice” live. The best part of their performance had to be when John Stamos, or Uncle Jesse, came on stage to perform with the band.

Once the Beach Boys finished their set, we continued to move forward. Jack, Lilah, and I kept continuing to move ourselves closer and closer (Sophia met up with one of her friends and we would see her again after Foo Fighters).

The next set I am a bit embarrassed to admit I was excited for. Weezer, now known for their “you just got weezered” meme or the infamous Buddy Holly riff, I actually happen to be a big fan of. The band put on a great performance, performing some of their most popular songs including “Say It Ain’t So” and “Island In The Sun”. Their final song had to be my favorite, the previously mentioned “Buddy Holly”. It was my second time seeing the band, and they once again put on a memorable performance.

It was almost time for the final act of the entire weekend and the exhaustion was starting to kick in. Sitting on the sand again, it only started to get chillier, with even some rain. 

That would all change when the Foo Fighters came out however.

The energy when the band emerged on stage was absolutely unreal. Starting with “All My Life” and going directly into my personal favorite “The Pretender”, the exhaustion I felt earlier seemed to slip away. It’s already established that Dave Grohl is a rock icon, but their set only further proved this.

The two hour set was filled with various moments of excitement, and others of remembrance. The song “Aurora” was dedicated to former drummer Taylor Hawkins, who tragically passed away in 2022. 

Finishing with the rock staple, “Everlong”, the weekend was now over. To put it simply, the festival was incredible, filled with memories I wouldn’t forget and songs that would be stuck in my head for weeks to come. I’m so excited I got to spend my weekend at one of my favorite places with some of my closest friends and I’m even more excited to hopefully go back next year. 

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