photos by David Rubene
Pop-punk legends Blink 182 filled the Xcel Energy Center with nostalgia and their pop-punk anthems on Thursday night. They were greeted by tens of thousands of screaming fans who came out just to see this legendary act who was joined by some of the most nostalgic bands you could pick.
The show was opened up by The All-American Rejects. These guys haven’t really been doing much as singer Tyson Ritter has found fame in the film industry. Maybe this was a blessing because the crowd seemed more than excited to hear the band play songs that dated back to the early 2000’s. Although they only had time for seven songs, each song had the crowd screaming the words back to the stage. Ritter kept on referring to the crowd as lazy since they were not moving as much as he wanted but it was clear that the audience was just conserving their energy for the next band to play.
A Day to Remember was easily the heaviest band on the bill last night. After a set of songs about love and heartbreak, ADTR came out and hit everyone with their almost metalcore breakdowns, screaming vocals, and shredding guitars. Some of the crowd seemed to not know what to do but some of them knew exactly what to do and within the first song a nice big moshpit had opened up.
ADTR’s set was full of their trademarks including throwing rolls of toilet paper into the crowd and singer Jeremy McKinnon getting into a giant inflatable ball and walking on top of the crowd. Although they’ve done this schtick every time I’ve seen the, it’s always entertaining to watch live. They are always full of energy and regardless of if they’re playing an old song or one of the songs off their newest release “Bad Vibrations”, they are definitely a crowd pleaser.
Last but not least was Blink 182. I have been to literally thousands of concerts but last night was my first chance to see these guys live and I was not disappointed at all.
With seven full length albums out, these guys had more than enough material to fill up hours and hours but they were only give an hour and a half. They did a great job of picking songs that the crowd wanted to hear. They played old songs, new songs, and even a couple songs off of demos. Judging by my lack of voice today, their song choice was on point. They started the show with “Feeling This” and closed with “Dammit”. They played a total of 24 songs but that just didn’t seem like enough. I never wanted their set to end.
Tom DeLonge, one third of this band, recently announced his departure from the band so he could go off and chase aliens. He was replaced by Matt Skiba of Alkaline Trio. For me, this was a treat because I am a huge Alkaline Trio fan. For other fans of Blink 182, this was a terrible change because being a trio, losing one member can ruin everything. In my opinion, Skiba fit in perfectly and at times, I completely forgot that he wasn’t an original member.
The crowd was relentless when it came to the jumping and screaming. I found myself in the thick of it and couldn’t help but get lost in the sea of thousands of people on the floor of the Xcel Energy Center. People of all ages were screaming along to the countless anthems that Blink 182 has put out throughout their almost 25 year career.
There were fireworks, intense light shows, great music, sweaty people, mosh pits… there was something for everyone.