Friday, 5 March 2010

561 [spunge], BOWLING FOR SOUP, Gash, Bristol Fleece, Thursday 30 May 2002

This was very much a, "will we, won't we," gig, as it was firstly rescheduled to this evening from the previous night, and then down-graded from the Academy, then BFS weren't going to play, then they were! So off we went, eventually, accompanied by BFS groupie The Big Man. Hit the venue at 8 to find that, because the Academy was originally scheduling this show as 16+, the Fleece weren't serving alcohol! So Rich led us backstage to meet the Soup guys and sneak some of their rider!

Caught most of young skate-punk openers Gash. When on-song, they sounded like a less mature China Drum, but were mostly relentlessly noisy and steamhammer repetitive. Bowling For Soup are however a much more musical and varied proposition. A most unusual band; self-confessed goony skate-punks, but with a sense of melody, harmony and good hooks, they came on to "I Just Want A New Girlfriend" and put together a very entertaining and easy-on-the-ears set. Good oldies like "Belgium" and "The Bitch Song" dovetailed in with new numbers, including the theme to new film "Jimmy Neutron", which was dedicated to Rich and which had more than a hint of the Dickies "Gigantor". As support, they wisely concentrated on the songs before the inter-song banter, although the quips (Jaret saying, "today is a very special day; it's my seventh birthday, yes, I'm 7 today!") and plectrum-juggling were in evidence. "Here's a song we stole off a goddamn Canadian," was the intro heralding their version of Bryan Adams' "Summer Of 69", which concluded a fine set.

Hung out with Rich and the Soupers during Spunge's set - ska-punk is so not my thing, particularly when they nick hooks from New Wave classic "Back Of My Hand" by the Jags and "Another Skunk Song" by Joyrider, and wilfully massacre Elvis Costello's classic "Oliver's Army". So we hit the road after their set, after Rich had spent ages saying goodbye to all the Soup and everyone connected with them. Just like Rachel and myself in Boston, really...

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