Support: The Xcerts
I feel somewhat cheated. After seeing The Get Up Kids twice last year, on what was originally billed as their ‘last ever UK tour’, seeing them again only a year later seems a bit wrong. That said, an extra opportunity to catch one of the most influential pop punk bands of all time is still too good to pass on.
An overwhelming feeling of déjà vu hit me from support act The Xcerts; having seen them with Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly here in early 2008. More than two years later and sadly there seems to be little development – granted the trio’s blend of raw rock was always promising to start with, but in terms of both presence and material it felt like I was watching the exact same band from ’08. A bit of crowd banter brought a little interest into an otherwise forgettable performance.
By the time The Get Up Kids took to the stage something didn’t quite feel right; despite the band being in high spirits – it being the last night of their current tour, there was no where near as much anticipation as there was last year. ‘Holiday’ and ‘I’m A Loner Dottie, A Rebel’ got the set off to the best possible start, with the crowd finally coming to life for two classics from the timeless ‘Something To Write Home About’. However following up with material from their recent ‘Simple Science’ EP halted any building momentum. Although ‘Your Petty Pretty Things’, easily the strongest offering from the EP, did impress, during the other new songs you couldn’t help but wonder what songs they have replaced in the set.
Thankfully the likes of ‘Coming Clean’, ‘Overdue’ and ‘Red Letter Day’ all got airings later on, the bands aforementioned high spirits evident during the encore of ‘Campfire Kansas’. Closing with their now customary covers of The Cure’s ‘Close To Me’ and The Replacement’s ‘Beer For Breakfast’, as well as final flourish from ‘Action and Action’ and ‘Ten Minutes’, what could have been a disappointing outing was salvaged. With appearances at this year’s Leeds and Reading festivals confirmed, and a new album in the works, the key for The Get Up Kids’ future will be balance – mixing enough of their vast back catalogue with whatever may come next. Either way, it still feels good to have them back.