Hailing from the East Coast of America, All Time Low have been blurring the lines between pop and punk since 2003. They kicked off this year, their 14th in the industry, with a new album announcement quickly followed by a gigantic UK tour, which ended with an explosive show at Brixton Academy.
We might just be in the middle of the biggest pop-punk resurgence since the noughties with stellar, fun-loving punk acts, from all over the world, coming out of their garages and immediately taking the world by storm.
It’s a pretty exciting prospect for the genre, and it probably wouldn’t be possible without All Time Low.
There’s no doubt that Waterparks are one of those very bands who were in the right place at the right time but it’s also easy to see what set them apart from the rest.
Five minutes with the Texas trio and their connection with their fans is clear. The goofball charm of frontman Awsten Knight is endearing to say the least and the bands upbeat summery nature is enough to win over any crowd.
In February, All Time Low announced that they had left Hopeless Records last year to sign to Fueled By Ramen. Aside from being a move they have been waiting for since high school, it also means that they are now officially label mates with California’s SWMRS (who signed to FBR in October) so it made sense to bring them along for the ride.
Another band who have more than a few years on the clock, SWMRS have been keeping pure punk rock alive (under various guises) since 2004. Tonight they were the grittier third of the line up pulling in the thousands of pop-punk fans with their Ramones-esque sound and definitive style.
The crowd was more than warmed up by the time All Time Low burst on to the stage with Kicking and Screaming, from 2015’s Future Hearts, the album
that dominated tonight’s set.
The Baltimore quartet stormed through six years of pop-punk hits in just three songs with Weightless, Somewhere in Neverland, and Cinderblock Garden, before unleashing the brand new song, and title track for the upcoming album, Last Young Renegade, for the very first time live.
Despite having only been released less than a week before, the crowd were already well rehearsed in the new tracks lyrics.
Both Last Young Renegade and Dirty Laundry (which is also set to star on album no. 7) carry a more solemn and mature vibe, but the fans have connected with it in just the same way as they always have. Perhaps this is the generation of ATL fans that the band have chosen to grow up with.
Tonight’s performance might be slightly more reserved in some ways but don’t worry, All Time Low’s trademark mastur-banter was still on top form and the boys jumped on the opportunity to make over 4000 people do a Chewbacca impression in unison. Something’s will never change, and never should.
Aside from blisteringly fun anthems, All Time Low have long been the kings of the heartfelt ballad and whilst Remembering Sunday has been absent from set lists for some time now, Therapy and Missing You are poignant, tear inducing replacements.
All Time Low are also no strangers to a cover song previously working their pop-punk magic on Rhianna’s Umbrella and Lady Gaga’s Alejandro, not to mention their time spent as a Blink-182 covers band. But tonight Brixton Academy was surprised with a live performance of Lorde’s Green Light, which the band rocked out in a recent Radio One Live Lounge.
For the real old school fans there was little to be excited about. Dear Maria, Count Me In was the only song played from 2006’s So Wrong It’s Right, but the ultimate old school ATL track, Jasey Rae, did make a surprise appearance in the middle of the encore.
All Time Low have promised fans that 2017 is going to be a big one for the
Hustler’s and, judging by tonight’s performance, things are certainly starting to change. Even the Future Hearts logo has evolved.
ALL TIME LOW WILL PLAY TWO ALBUM LAUNCH SHOWS AT THE ROSE THEATRE, KINGSTON, FOR BANQUET RECORDS ON MAY 20TH 2017. TICKETS AVAILABLE HERE.
LAST YOUNG RENEGADE WILL BE RELEASED ON JUNE 2ND 2017. PRE ORDER HERE.