I’ll be honest, I missed Moose Blood’s set. A girl’s gotta eat.
Neck Deep provide a solid, if a little tepid, performance which was met with mixed reactions, but that’s not surprising given how divide the UK pop punk scene seems to be on the band. After stopping a song to call out two dudes fighting up front, Neck Deep did give a pretty catchy performance Can’t Kick up the Roots.
New Found glory whipped up a decent amount of energy from the crowd. Although the instrumentals where good, the vocals seemed a little lackluster. It was almost impossible to decipher anything from lead vocalist Jordan Pundik, but when your songs are as well known as NFG’s, it doesn’t matter too much. Their cover of Kiss Me as was gorgeous and helped to pace the set nicely.
A Day to Remember opened the set with a Homesick classic, Mr. Highway’s thinking about the end. This was a real crowd pleaser and instantly opened up a great pit, which frontman McKinnon encouraged (“You don’t have to participate, but stand the fuck back!”) before launching into the first single from Bad Vibrations, Paranoia.
Having won AltPress’s Best Live Band award back in 2015, the Floridian quartet having done nothing but improve on stage (and man, were they already good back in ’15), and in the studio. Bad Vibrations is arguably one of the best albums they’ve put out their and just judging from Birmingham’s show, the tour is really doing it justice. McKinnon’s voice has gone from strength to strength and his abilities as both a hardcore vocalist and singer are as good, if not better, live as they are in the studio. There was not a note out of key or beat out of time the whole evening, yet the performance was full of all the charm of a live show.
The set was an awesome mix of the bands older stuff like Fast Forward to 2020, fan faves including My Life for Hire, and I’m Made of Wax, Larry, and new classics like the seriously heavy Exposed, and Right Back at it Again from their previous album Common Courtesy.
(video not mine)
If anything, the set list was more pop punk than expected, as I thought they would play more into the mood of Bad Vibrations, which showcased more of their hardcore talents. But, the gig was full of packed with energy from both the crowd and band.
The only thing that was missing was a bit crowd interaction. I did feel at times like A Day to Remember were just running through as well rehearsed set, skipping from song to song. McKinnon tried to chat to the audience during the first part of their encore, an acoustic set of If it Means a lot to You, but were meet with backlash from some of the crowd at the mention of Oasis (hey, I feel you).
Overall, a sick performance from band that just seems to be flaunting the fact they can’t be beaten live, at this point. All I can say is I can’t wait until next time.