Bowling For Soup @ Eventim Apollo 23rd October 2013

Originally supposed to take place at The Forum the last ever Bowling For Soup show was upgraded to the new Eventim Apollo. Now this was the first time I had attended a gig at this re branded venue. I have been a fan of Bowling For Soup ever since the day I heard Girl All The Bad Guys want on MTV, since that day I have become hooked on the pop/ punk songs that they sing. Now they are Jaret Reddick, Chris Burney, Erik Chandler, Gary Wiseman. With this being the end of the band I decided to splash out on VIP. Actually it wasn’t that much compared to the early entry ticket I purchased for Paramore at Wembley Arena. With this VIP Package you got to witness an acoustic show, meet the band and receive an autographed poster. It was a complete steal. I got one because this would have been the only opportunity to meet them and get a photo. It would have been nice to of had longer with them but due to the fact that there were a lot of people it was just a quick hi, photo then you are off. After having been on the road they all succumbed to flu and fair play to them not cancelling the show. It may of not been 100% but they put everything into it to deliver a hit packed set to perfection.

“Wish me luck” Jaret Reddick said when himself and Erik Chandler were delivering the acoustic part of the evening. Reddick was referring to the fact that his voice was almost going. The ever so short acoustic set opened up with Running From Your Dad which featured on the album Drunk Enough To Dance. What I liked about this was the fact this didn’t feature in the main set. Still this was an infectious tune which was delivered without the use of any microphones. This went down well but the vocals were incredibly strained.

“It’s good to see you guys. We’re filming a DVD tonight so act like you like us” Reddick then mentioned before Circle. Now this was a Edie Brickell & New Bohemians cover and featured on the current album Lunch, Drunk, Love. Originally this had a female vocal and it was nice to hear their own take on this. They actually did it justice and hearing this acoustic left me completely entranced.

So once the acoustic set was finished everyone formed a queue for the meet and greet. Now once that was over there was a rush to get to the barrier. Thankfully I managed to slot in and have my barrier spot. The band took to the stage at 8.30pm. As there was only one support and that this was the farewell tour, the set which was played had been extended. All I can say is this was simply epic. The show lasted for almost 2 hours 40 minutes and the set showcased material from the new album as well as featuring the old classics. From the set list I count 32 songs which was one mammoth set. Despite the fact Jaret and Erik were losing their voice earlier the show that they put on was literally incredible. Every tune was a right belter and it is hard just to pick out one. What I was most excited about was hearing songs from albums The Great Burrito Extortion Case and A Hangover You Don’t Deserve performed live. Songs such as Almost, High School Never Ends, Ohio, Shut Up And Smile, My Hometown, When We Die, Friends Of Mine and 1985 were completely infectious and oozed bundles of energy. If I am being picky I would of loved to of heard Last Call Casualty from A Hangover You Don’t Deserve and Epiphany and Val Kilmer from The Great Burrito Extortion.

Come to think of it this was hits packed with a few extra additions. You even had Suckerpunch and The Bitch Song from debut album Let’s Do It For Johnny which was a right treat. The new songs were pretty sweet and just hearing the Phineas and Ferb theme tune was quite something. There were plenty of crowd surfers throughout this gig which was a pain because I was getting kicked in the face which did hurt. Whenever someone was approaching I had to duck. I would have to say the songs that people went crazy for were Emily, Punk Rock 101, Girl All The Bad Guys Want and the curtain closer 1985. For 1985 a fan came onto the stage to play the guitar. The encore was pretty cool as well and their take on Baby One More Time was interesting to say the least.

SET LIST

Critically Disdained
Almost
No Hablo Ingles
Let’s Go To The Pub
Hooray For Beer
Emily
Since We Broke Up
Turbulence
High School Never Ends
Ohio
Right About Now
Really Cool Dance Song
My Wena
I Don’t Wanna Rock
Phineas and Ferb
Envy
Stacy’s Mom
The Last Rock Show
Punk Rock 101
Prettiest Girl
My Hometown
Suckerpunch
When We Die
The Bitch Song
Shut Up And Smile
Girl All The Bad Guys Want
Friend Of Mine
Circle

ENCORE

Belgium
Baby One More Time
1985

OVERALL: This was one outstanding show and I am pleased I purchased a ticket for it. It was ashame that this was the last Bowling For Soup show but they haven’t ruled out appearing at festivals. Meeting them was quite something. Yes I may of payed slightly extra to do so, but the chance to meet a band you have been a fan of for almost 10 years is likely never to happen again.

Bowling For Soup are a mixture of Punk and Pop. Even though this wasn’t the greatest BFS show due to the bands illness they still all carried on regardless to put on something utterly magical. It was nice to hear the hits live plus the new songs sounded pretty rad as well. The atmosphere was electric and there were plenty of crowd surfers.

If they play any festival near me I definitely will be there.

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