All Time Low – Brixton Academy, London

By Andy

It?s not often you get three big name bands playing Brixton Academy together, for the price most people would happily pay to see just the one, but alas tonight is a case of just that. The first of two sold-out (OK, almost sold-out) nights in the capital – on paper at least – shapes up to be something rather special indeed.

Opening up the evening to rapturous applause and ear-piercing screams are YOUNG GUNS [4/5], who seem to be on an ever-increasing climb to the top at the minute. While in the past Punktastic has been witness to the guys suffer technical hitch after technical hitch, tonight The Academy is kind to the High Wycombe five-piece and the guys pull off an incendiary show. It?s a testament to their showmanship and the weight of tracks like ?Stitches? and ?Crystal Clear? just how many people are in THIS EARLY, singing along at the top of their lungs and bouncing as high as possible off The Academy?s sloping floor.

YELLOWCARD [4.5/5] fans in London and the surrounding counties have been waiting far too long to see them grace a stage in the capital. Fortunately, the wait seems to have been worth every second and the roar that greets Ryan , Ryan, Sean, Sean and LP as they waltz on stage feels like nothing short of a homecoming. Would it not have been for the utter balls-up at the sound desk for the entirety of the opening track ?Lights And Sounds?, this would have been a five out of five affair. Nevertheless, ?Way Away?, ?Believe? and ?Five Becomes Four? sound absolutely phenomenal and the band appear to be enjoying themselves to the fullest. Quite why Jack Barakat from All Time Low feels the need to come and play a redundant guitar part on ?Hang Me Up?, we?re not sure, but his presence far from dampens things. By the end of it, it?s a set all too short, fulfilling nonetheless.

It?s disappointing then, that ALL TIME LOW [2.5/5] fail to live up to the standards of the two acts before them. Of course, they?re incredibly slick and musically there are few notes or chords not hit, but there is no energy, no enthusiasm and no sincerity in a single second of their performance. Had they spent less time collecting pre-teen bras to hang from their mic stands and running through their second-rate Blink 182 routine, this might have been a different story. Even in new track ?Time Bomb? (which thanks to the wonders of filesharing has a chorus of thousands singing along) Jack and Alex look like they?re doing nothing but going through the motions. In all truthfulness, any one of these three bands could have pulled off a headline performance tonight, it?s just a shame it had to be All Time Low.