From Altar to Anthem: Meet Me at the Altar’s Punk Odyssey

drawing of a Black girl with purple and pink hair singing into a microphone
illustration by Courtney Jeffs

Mosh pits, conga lines, crowd surfing, oh my!

The buzz was tangible as the Hawthorne Theater braced itself for the explosive performance of punk powerhouse Meet Me at the Altar. In a night promising chaos, chords, and community, this trio delivered a sonic whirlwind that had Portland buzzing with punk rock fervor and left an unforgettable mark on every soul in attendance.

Before Meet Me at the Altar hit the stage, the room was alive with nostalgic energy, fueled by early 2000s punk and pop anthems from the likes of Avril Lavigne, Jesse McCartney, 5 Seconds of Summer, The All American Rejects, and an impromptu karaoke session of “Call Me Maybe” by Carly Rae Jepsen —setting the stage for the punk sound we came to devour. Having already released one debut album and three EPs, the anticipation was unmistakable as we waited to see which song they would draw from their extensive six-year discography, creating an atmosphere charged with excitement.

  From the fiery opening chords of “Same Language” to the rebellious anthem “Say It (To My Face),” Meet Me at the Altar took us on a raucous journey through their discography and favorite hits. Their setlist was a rollercoaster of punk energy, featuring old favorites, new bangers, and unexpected covers, culminating in an unforgettable musical experience.

Each song reverberated with the raw, unbridled energy that defines punk rock. But what truly lit up the room was the band’s infectious love for the trailblazers who came before them. From paying homage to Kelly Clarkson with “Since You Been Gone” to rocking out to classic “Take Me Away” from Lindsay Lohan’s Freaky Friday soundtrack, and even setting the stage on fire with a Jonas Brothers jam session, Meet Me at the Altar had us burning up for more.

Fronted by the dynamic Edith Victoria, Meet Me at the Altar owned the stage with a charisma that was impossible to ignore. Edith’s gritty vocals and rebellious banter kept us hooked, while guitarist and occasional bassist Téa Campbell commanded the stage with the presence of a rock legend.

This poppy, punky mash-up didn’t shy away from the catchy hooks of pop, but it never lost its punk rock bite. Meet Me at the Altar paid homage to the rock and punk bands that paved the way for them, sharing an emotional journey of carving out their own space in a genre that wasn’t always welcoming. Their message resonated deeply, especially with the Black girls in the audience who finally found a space where they could rock and roll freely.

As the final chords echoed through the Hawthorne Theater, it was clear that Meet Me at the Altar didn’t just perform, they ignited a punk rock revolution. Their invitation to join the rebellion lingered in the air long after the last note faded, leaving us all electrified and hungry for more.

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