Live Review: Blink-182 and The All-American Reject – Capital FM Arena, Nottingham – 11/7/2012

For some Blink-182’s return to Nottingham has been a long time coming, over eighteen months to be exact but nevertheless the legendary pop punk trio have finally returned.

12 months overdue, Mark, Tom and Travis have brought a different set of support acts and for many including us, missed out on The Blackout’s opening slot. However by the time The All-American Rejects come on, the arena is packed and having recently released their fourth album ‘Kids In The Street’ you may have thought the Oklahoma band would of provided a set which heavily borrowed from it, however they take a slightly safer route with a set focusing on the “hits.” From ‘Dirty Little Secret’ to ‘Swing, Swing’ to the closing ‘Gives You Hell,’ its clear the Rejects have an arsenal of crowd-pleasing numbers in their back catalogue, whilst new songs display their admirable attempt of developing their sound; ‘Walk Over Me’ is a stomping rock number filled with attitude and ‘Kids In The Street’ is a subtle poppy track with a strong hook yet in comparison to their more familiar numbers, tonight it falls slightly flat.

After a reasonable wait, the triumphant return of Blink-182 begins with tons of energy with ‘Feeling This’ and from there on in the trio produce an enjoyable set with stand out singles ‘I Miss You’ and ‘What’s My Age Again?’ being shifted out the way early on. Although this tour is in part of promoting last year’s ‘Neighborhoods’ album, its clear that some fans are somewhat unfamiliar with songs such as ‘Wishing Well’ and ‘After Midnight’ not receiving the best reactions.

From this point on its clear that tonight is all about celebrating Blink’s 20 year history and with comes a sense of nostalgia which you helplessly fall for. Despite Tom Delonge and Mark Hoppus both nearing middle age, the silly jokes are part and parcel of a Blink-182 show. The banter between the two is for the most part kept to a minimum with Mark spontaneously singing Kelis’ ‘Milkshake’ and Tom performing ‘Take Of Your Pants and Jacket’ b-side ‘Fuck A Dog.’

Following on from the expected ‘All the Small Things’ and ‘Josie,’ we are unfortunately treated to a one-song encore (‘Dammit.’) A slightly sour end to the night as many, including me, were expecting a brief acoustic encore which has been seen at some shows on this tour but unfortunately Nottingham wasn’t treated to such a unique sight.

Nevertheless performance-wise, the band are thorough throughout the show with the obvious highlight being Travis Barker’s unbelievable drumming; his drum solo during the encore simply leaves you stunned and plainly thinking “holy shit.”

At the end of the day, however brief this reunion is and if Blink-182 become inactive again, its clear that they will be never be forgotten as tonight was a celebration of a band’s legacy and the memorable songs they have produced throughout the years (but a few more songs from ‘TOYPAJ’ would of been welcomed.) They may have not grown up with age but after tonight, I don’t think anyone would want them to. A brilliant show all-around.

Setlist:

Feeling This
Up All Night
The Rock Show
What’s My Age Again?
Down
I Miss You
Milkshake [ Kelis Cover ] Wishing Well
Dumpweed
Always
Violence
After Midnight
First Date
Heart’s All Gone
Man Overboard
Ghost on the Dancefloor
Fuck a Dog
All the Small Things
Josie
Encore:
Can a Drummer Get Some (Travis Barker solo)
Dammit

Words by Sean Reid

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