Gaten Matarazzo & Work In Progress Rock Out at The Stone Pony!

OPENERS ELEPHANT TALK AND THE FLUKES POUND THE STAGE AS WELL!


By John Matlosz

December 27, 2019

WORK IN PROGRESS

Asbury Park Vibes had the privilege to witness the return of New Jersey native’s Work In Progress featuring Gaten Matarazzo from the hit TV show “Stranger Things.” It was almost two years since their debut performance at the Stone Pony, and now they were back better than ever.


I arrived at the venue about an hour before the doors opened. Even then, a huge line wrapped the iconic venue filled with excited fans of all ages. It was clear they were all very eager to see their favorite band live. Some fans realized that I had a camera in hand and even wanted me to take their picture!


At last, the doors opened and fans rushed to the front of the venue, making sure they had a great spot. There could not have been better openers that night than local bands, Elephant Talk and The Flukes! They both ignited the fire in their own unique ways. The syncopated, but catchy and groovy progressive rockness of Elephant Talk shocked the fans (and their parents). Of course with The Flukes, I never have enough good things to say about them! Their energy and dynamic is always off the charts, especially simultaneously wearing a Santa claus outfit.

Okay, but what about Work In Progress? Let’s talk about the members. Work In Progress is led by Gaten and Sabrina Matarazzo (lead vocals), Carmen Matarazzo (drums), Matt Grayson (bass), Griffin Schriever (lead guitar), and AJ Grayson (keyboards). According to the band’s official website, the band was formed by Chad, Griffin, and Carmen at Pinelands Regional High School. Work In Progress was complete when they added Sabrina and Gaten, followed by Matt’s brother, AJ.


The band’s setlist was comprised of rock covers, and many unreleased originals. They only have two originals released on music platforms, Dream Eater and Waste My Time, but it would be a huge crime if this phenomenal young rock group stopped releasing new material! Lead singers, Gaten and Sabrina worked flawlessly taking turns on the pipes. Their voices complimented each other very nicely. Sabrina’s vocal range just blew me away. I was so in shock it was indescribable. Trust me, her voice is one of a kind and extremely underrated. Gaten’s voice also has that angelic ring to it. His energy running back and forth, interacting with his band members really transferred to the crowd and ramped them up. This dude’s got it all! The two maintained an amazing, high energy performance, and captivated the audience! The liveliness and precision of drummer Carmen kept the fans grooving and air drumming all night! Bassist Matt locked in with Carmen, making for a powerful rhythm section. Griffin’s warm, crunchy guitar sound shined right through those speakers, bolstering the entire place. And of course AJ mixed in the perfect blend of season and spice, making for a vibrant keyboard section and added a new element to the group.

WORK IN PROGRESS
WORK IN PROGRESS

Mid-show, the show was slowed down, in a great way, of course, with what was on their setlist as “The Acoustic.” This song was written and played on acoustic guitar by Matt Grayson, with Gaten on vocals and Carmen backing him up. This was the song of the set where the venue gets filled with hundreds of cell phone lights moving back and forth. Every performer’s dream!


The band’s style is highly influenced by Paramore. In fact, the band’s performance of “Misery Business” caught the attention of Hayley Williams and later on invited the Matarazzo siblings on stage to sing the tune! There’s definitely a video on YouTube... what a remarkable moment it must’ve been for those guys! I expect 2020 to be a big year for Work In Progress. I am excited to see what the future holds for them.

Setlist

Hold The Line (Toto cover) / Playhead / You Had Me / Honey Roll / Big Mouth / Run Rudolph (Chuck Berry cover) / Teenagers (MCR cover) / My Yard / The Acoustic / Rhyme or Reason / Around The World (Red Hot Chilli Peppers cover) / Heartbreak In Motion


Encore: Dream Eater / Waste My Time


OPENERS

ELEPHANT TALK

AVA PANZA, JOHN ZAJAC, JONATHAN SALVO

THE FLUKES

ANTHONY TRILLI, JOE TRILLI, MIKE TRILLI, KYLE MISSRY

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Asbury Park Vibes


ASBURY PARK VIBES is a media outlet dedicated to shining a light on the music scene at the Jersey Shore and throughout the Mid-Atlantic Region of the U.S.! We strive to provide show reviews and photographs that capture the true essence and fan experience of each concert. Our coverage focuses keenly on the artists and venues in legendary Asbury Park, New Jersey, however you'll also catch us promoting events throughout NJ, PA and NY as well! There is nothing better than the dynamic energy and vibes you feel when you experience a concert at the Jersey Shore! We're sure we'll see you at a concert here very soon!

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