90s punk rockers Blink-182 spread their summer takeover across the Philadelphia area last Thursday, Aug. 27 via the Susquehanna Bank Centerin Camden, N.J.
Along for the ride were fellow genre chums Weezer, Taking Back Sunday and newcomers Chester French, who fell under the unknown opener curse and endured pitiful secondary staging in front of a less than interested crowd.
However, the guys of Chester French (Andrew D.A. Wallach and Maxwell Drummey) AREknown, just not in this particular scene. CF has worked with artists from Diddy and Jay-Z to Talib Kweli and Pharrell Williams and seems to have a presence more so in the hip-hop community.
But the recently formed live version of the band may have some standing with songs like “She Loves Everybody” and “Jimmy Choos.” Unfortunately, the band’s cover of Cutting Crew’s “(I Just) Died in Your Arms Tonight” was lost on the majority of the crowd who lacked a certain appreciation for that 80s synthesizer sound.
Next up was Taking Back Sunday who, in a short time, managed to effectively weave through their four album deep catalog, picking and choosing between hit singles (“Make Damn Sure,” “Cute Without the ‘E’ (Cut from the Team)”), fan favorites (“Liar (It Takes One to Know One),” “A Decade Under the Influence”) and new material from their June release, New Again(“Sink Into Me,” “Everything Must Go”).
And, if you’re wondering, Fred Mascherino replacement lead guitarist Matt Fazzi STILL rocked the house, even with a broken foot.
Singer Adam Lazzara prepped the crowd for the next band on the bill saying, “These guys have a new costume every night.”
For their performance in Camden, the Weezer dudes chose to don all-white, Nike track suits. To my surprise (and delight) the band played a ton of songs from their first self-titled album, A.K.A The Blue Albumincluding “Buddy Holly” and “My Name is Jonas.” Pulling “Surf Wax America” out of the bag was intense enough, but when it was coupled with trampolines, you can only imagine the craziness that ensued.
In addition to Pinkerton’s “The Good Life” and “Pork and Beans” from 2008’s The Red Album, singer Rivers Cuomo duped us all on a performance of The Green Album’s “Island in the Sun”(notice, there are drums playing, but no drummer).
Weezer even gave a preview of their forth-coming seventh album, Ratitude(due out Oct. 27) with the first single, (If You’re Wondering If I Want You To) I Want You To.
The band closed with The Clash’s “Should I Stay or Should I Go,”another nod to the 80s music lovers in the crowds.
The anticipation of the crowd rolled in waves from the pit to the lawn and when Blink-182 finally took to the stage, all was lost in madness. Makeshift mosh pits erupted on cue and you could barely hear the vocals of guitarist Tom DeLonge and bassist Mark Hoppus over the fans, who sang each song perfectly, word for word.
The Blink dudes have a reputation for being hilarious and awesome on stage and this show was no exception. It felt more like a house party with old friends than a concert with DeLonge ripping on Hoppus and receiving back in full force what he dished out. The guys even changed the lyrics to the songs on a whim to phrases I won’t dare repeat here, so in addition to unison singing, insane laughter could be heard from the audience.
The band played hit singles such as “The Rock Show,” “Feeling This” and “Adam’s Song” as well as fan favorites “Dumpweed,” “I Miss You” and “Anthem Part Two.”
But no song could compare to drummer Travis Barker and the infamous drum solo that everyone had been talking about for weeks. There was a lot of excitement over seeing Barker back in front of his drums after the horrific 2008 plane crash in that nearly claimed his life. As for that solo, well, it just cannot be described; you have to see it to believe it.
Somehow after that solo, the crowd was able to pick their jaws up from the floor and enjoy Blink’s closers, Cheshire Cat’s “Carousel” and “Damnit” from Dude Ranch.
Sadly, only a day later, the high from Blink’s triumphant return was crushed by the news of the unfortunate death of friend Adam “DJ AM” Goldstein last Friday. In a cruel twist of fate, Goldstein was the only other survivor (in addition to Barker) of that same deadly plane crash last year.
During the Hartford, Conn. show the following night, the band dedicatedtheir song “Down” to their fallen friend along with a very emotional moment of silence.
Blink did not take the stage in Saratoga, N.Y. on Aug. 31 and certain dates on the remainder of the tour are due to be rescheduled: the Sept. 2 and 3 shows in Cleveland, Ohio and St. Louis, Mo. will now take place on Sept. 29 (St. Louis) and 30 (Cleveland) which requires the Sept. 29 and Oct. 1 shows in Atlanta, Ga. and Charlotte, N.C. to be moved to Oct. 6 (Charlotte) and 7 (Atlanta).
The Blink tour will run through the beginning of October, with two more local stops at the Borgata Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City on Oct. 3 with Asher Roth and New York City’s Madison Square Garden on Oct. 4 with Fall Out Boy.
You can contact Cara Donaldson at email@example.com