Years in the making these two juggernauts of the punk-rock scene joined forces to share headlining duties for a string of shows across the UK with the first stop on the road at the o2 City Hall in Newcastle.
The running order for the evening would start with California rock band Destroy Boys. They erupted into life with their guitar heavy, screaming vocals and in your face attitude that immediately grabbed the attention of everyone quickly piling into the room, forcing you into their world of equal parts hardcore and raw energy. Their songs are honest, punchy and written from personal experience that could site a nerve and harmonise with anyone who shares a similar memory and give you much more to think about than you typical tune.
Next gracing the stage would be Taking Back Sunday. Opening with “what’s it feel like to be a ghost’ from their breakthrough album Louder Now. This had the crowd singing along to every word within an instant. Adam Lazzara’s distinctive vocals synchronise wonderfully with John Nolans as they charged through their set list of huge coming of age (for me at least) anthems. As a band they are mesmerising to watch with Lazzara demonstrates his slick moves and command of a spinning microphone with ease. They played for upwards of an hour closing with their biggest single MakeDamnSure, it was enough to see out the night and leave everyone happy but we still had more to come.
Alkaline Trio, as a driving force behind the pop punk revolution, with Taking Back Sunday even singing their praises as early influences moments before, were our headliners for the evening. They had just over an hour left to pack as many songs from their extensive catalogue into the night. There wasn’t much time for drawn out audience interaction but that didn’t matter, opening with Private Eye followed by We’ve Had Enough they would perform every song they could to a crowd who had been treated to a triple threat of fantastic bands this evening.
Unfortunately however, Alkaline Trio had bitten off more than they could chew. 19 songs was just too many and this had left us with a dilemma. What would they play for their encore? With only enough time for one more song they made the crowd decide between their two biggest hits, Time to Waste and Radio. The former got the vote as they dived into a huge, high paced, singalong to round out a wonderful night.
Article & Photos By Sam Wall