Pop Punk! What does it make you think of? Blues skies, keg parties, the Sun is shining… Brighton during Storm Dennis tonight was none of the above. Sodden, dreary, raindrops the size of golfballs but the Brighton Pop Punk fan is a hardy soul, so they made their way to the seafront located Brighton Centre if a little bedraggled to see heavyweights Bowling For Soup, supported by Simple Plan and new kids on the block, Not UR Girlfrenz.
Bowling For Soup has been around for over twenty-five years. That’s right, twenty-five years.
Playing an eighteen song setlist which was interspersed liberally with tales and chat ranging from the benefit of the metric system to the male of the species and what do you call toilet paper in England. They even admit during the gig they keep their setlist firmly based on the older albums as the gig-goer isn’t that interested in the newer songs. The exception to that rule tonight was current single, Alexa Bliss, about the WWE wrestler which is nearing one million views on YouTube.
Ohio is played early on, with help from both support bands and Girl All The Bad Guys Want at about mid-set point. Only 1985 was saved for the two-song encore. It was Pop Punk at its best. At times the skits slowed the showdown but BFS being old hands got back to the tunes.
Simple Plan like BFS has been toiling in the Pop Punk fields for decades. Bouncy and fun but determined they gave a good account to a noticeably larger crowd than openers Not UR Girlfrenz. Summer Paradise and Boom! were the highlights of their set. As with BFS and NUGF we got the benefits of an arena show production; smoke cannons, giant balloons and large video screens. Not as well known as BFS, the crowd certainly loved Simple Plan and are a band if you find themselves near them at a festival will give you good Pop Punk!
Openers Not UR Girlfrenz weren’t even born when Bowling For Soup was founded in the Nineties. Prodigies of main man Jaret Reddick, NUGF are a teenage trio who came out to a modified intro video based on the Powerpuff Girls cartoon which set the tone perfectly. Tough yet sweet is a fair summation of their sound and they helped the bedraggled crowd already in the arena dry off in double-quick time. Finishing a spirited set with a cover of Spice Girls hit Wannabe they gave a good account of themselves and set their stall out as the ones to watch from the new breed of Pop Punks!
Pop Punk is of age but doesn’t act it…So there!