Blink 182 have brought themselves and Lower Than Atlantis to the Brixton Academy for two sold-out and intimate shows after their recent arena tour, and as can be expected the first night was nothing short of amazing.
Support came in the form of Lower Than Atlantis who have gone from strength to strength since their arrival on the scene in 2007. The Hertfordshire band walk on stage to a room packed with screaming fans, and blast through a strong and energetic set. They start with ‘Beech Like The Tree’ and Mike Duce doesn’t waste any time in trying to warm the crowd up, by getting the academy to almost pogo through the floor. It seems remarkable to think that we were watching the LTA boys in tiny 200/ 300 venues around the country less than 2 years ago. The band are so tight and with Mike Duce playing captain at the helm the band rip through a tight and punchy set that even showcases a song from their upcoming album, Changing Tune, which is due for release in September. The boys end with a montage of Foo Fighters songs that goes down far too well with the already excited crowd, before playing fan favourite ‘Deadliest Catch’.
When a black curtain is raised in front of the stage, a deafening scream erupts as people glimpse the silhouette of Travis Barker mounting the drum riser on stage. A few seconds later and Blink burst onto stage. Considering they’ve been going strong for 20 years now, you’d think that they’d maybe have a few problems being as energetic as they used to be, but Mark Hoppus doesn’t stand still for almost the entire set, bouncing and skipping all over the stage, while Tom DeLonge straddles his mike and nearly dances his way through every song. Travis Barker himself is a sight to behold, a blur of arms and drumsticks. The band plays through a greatest hits set that includes songs from every album. The exact kind of set you want them to play. ‘Always’, ‘What’s My Age Again?’, ‘Rock Show’, ‘First Date’ and ‘I Miss You’ all make an appearance tonight, and the band sound nothing short of amazing.
The most memorable and remarkable moment of the evening is when a small drum kit is placed in the centre of stage and all three of the guys play a stripped down acoustic set, and tell the crowd a few personal stories about the songs and albums they’ve made. ‘Reckless Abandon’ is without a doubt the highlight of the night as in true style the intimate show lives up to its name with this song.
To sum up the evening as we walk out of the venue it’s one of those rare moments when all you can see on the faces of people around you are massive smiles. If you went to the arena shows we think you might just have missed out on one of the finest Blink performances since they were last in venues of this size a good few years ago.
Below: Blink 182 live at Manchester Apollo