Bad Religion, Alkaline Trio, and War on Women Take on the Norva

by | Oct 25, 2021

Being a band for over 40 years and consistently making unwaveringly insightful music is an accomplishment few groups have achieved. Los Angeles punk outfit Bad Religion has managed to do just that. Like other long-running underground groups such as The Melvins and Guided By Voices, Bad Religion created a definitive sound that has influenced countless bands around the globe. This Wednesday, the 27th, they will be coming to Norfolk for a performance at the NorVa. 


The group played their first shows in 1980 while vocalist Greg Graffin, guitarist Brett Gurewitz, bassist Jay Bentley, and original drummer Jay Ziskrout were still in high school. By early 1981 they released a six-song 7″ record on Gurewitz’s now prolific Epitaph Records. The following year the group unleashed their first full-length “How Could Hell Be Any Worse?” a collection of fast, rugged punk songs harnessing the rage and desolation of early 80’s Los Angeles. 


After frustrations with their second album “Into The Unknown” and members’ increasingly divergent personal lives, the band reinvigorated themselves. It delivered a landmark album with the 15 song masterpiece known as “Suffer”. With their third album’s release in 1988, the record became a blueprint of sorts for a turning point in the punk rock world that would eventually see bands like NOFX, Rancid, Green Day, The Offspring, among others, reach mainstream success. 


Fast forward to the band’s most recent album, “Age Of Unreason” that came out in May of 2019. Their seventeenth full-length and the first studio effort to feature guitarist Mike Dimkich (also of Channel 3 and The Cult) and drummer Jamie Miller. “Age of Unreason” retains the band’s founding members Graffin, Gurewitz, and Bentley, as well as longtime guitarist Brian Baker (Minor Threat, Dag Nasty), who joined way back in 1994. It’s received high acclaim from numerous critics and fans alike. 


From their initial jam session in a San Fernando Valley garage called “The Hell Hole” to headlining major music festivals worldwide, Bad Religion has cemented its place as one of the most ground-breaking bands in punk rock history. This performance will surely be a celebration of their four-decades-long legacy.

Co-headlining the show are long-running melodic punks Alkaline Trio who have created quite a legacy of their own since forming in 1996.


Led by Vocalist/Guitarist Matt Skiba, his captivating songwriting has spawned anthems like “Radio,” “Private Eye,” and “We’ve Had Enough”. After a few lineup changes, the band solidified in 2001 with bassist Dan Adriano and drummer Derek Grant, and that trio has remained intact for each album ever since.


From the beginning, the Trio remains steadfast in their desire to tour relentlessly. Judging from the videos that have surfaced from their recent Riot Fest performance, it looks like we’ll be in for a full-tilt, no-frills set that will be as therapeutic as it is fun.

Also performing is one of the most exciting bands to come around in the last ten years, War On Women. Founded by guitarist Brooks Harlan and vocalist Shawna Potter, their sound takes inspiration from the Riot Grrrl bands Potter discovered as a teenager.


I first heard them when their debut EP “Improvised Weapons” came out in 2011 on the Baltimore-based label Exotic Fever Records. Since then, the group has released three full-length albums for hardcore punk staple Bridge Nine, including their most recent “Wonderful Hell” last year.


Overall this show should be an incredible evening of relentless punk rock n’ roll bliss not to be missed. Tickets are available at


Bad Religion “Suffer” LP


Alkaline Trio “We’ve Had Enough” Single


War On Woman “Improvised Weapons” EP


Dave Allison

Virginia Beach

Dave Allison runs the record label and website Custom Made Music and is part of the bands The Quintz and Last Remaining Pinnacle. He also makes his own solo recordings and has worked in the music biz for over 30 years. His first-ever performance was playing "Shout At The Devil" at the age of 10 at his Catholic Elementary School. He's regularly out in Norfolk watching bands and vending at various events around the area.

Related Merch