Tonight presents an alternative Valentine’s evening to the masses. Tonight presents Bowling For Soup’s UK tour, Let’s Have Another Round. A sold out Great Hall in Cardiff is filled by nothing but die hard Bowling For Soup fans and couples. Old couples, young couples. Just couples. It’s Valentine’s day alright, and every act seems determined to rinse this commercial holiday.
There’s a loud roar when MC Lars announces Valentine’s Day as his first words for tonight. He hears this enthusiasm and runs with it; ordering arm waves, claps, sways and general movement, which, without question, he receives. In terms of sound, he seems to be distant fit on the tour’s line up, but he wholly justifies his position with his ability to bring fun to this atmosphere and impressive freestyle techniques, slipping in welsh-isms like “cwtch” and “whose coat is this jacket?”
Next up are Nottingham bred pop-rockers, Lacey. Mellow, catchy and technically perfect, they’re a hit with the fans. Incorporating some classic British charm through both sound and personality into their set and stage chat seems to be their selling point and ultimately makes them shine on an almost all American bill.
Veterans of playing with Bowling For Soup are The Dollyrots. The atmosphere of romance is immediate when they play, as the chemistry between the married bassist, Kelly Ogden and Luis Cabesaz is clear, in an endearing way. Their performance is tight, filled with fun, nostalgic sounding tracks and stage banter about finding a husband in a welsh man. Is it Valentine’s day tonight? Because if it wasn’t obvious before, it definitely is after The Dollyrots perform.
Bowling For Soup display February 14th in the best way possible. With a stage setup and props that scream love. Thankfully to the singletons in the crowd, this isn’t an element that they fixate much on. Instead, they just want to entertain. From silly and hilarious dance moves to hit after hit; Emily gets as much attention and applaud as High School Never Ends. Throwing in Stacy’s Mom and a surprising mash up of New Found Glory, Jimmy Eat World, Blink 182, Green Day & more, Bowling For Soup have compiled a set list that, pleases the crowd.
Filling in the gaps of their energetic anthems with a milder Blink 182 / All Time Low-esque conversation, the reaction is laughed at, not cringed at. They’ve struck a balance between talking nonsense, actual funny genitalia jokes, and knowing when to shut up and play a song.
There’s an apparent feeling of disappointment in the air. Not because of a lack of atmosphere or enthusiam or their favourite song, but purely because an evening of laughter and good music has ended. Perhaps the varying ages here to see Bowling For Soup tonight are indicators of their long, successful but still relevant careers.