LIVE: All Time Low / Good Charlotte @ Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff

By Lais

Tonight is the first date of All Time Low’s UK arena tour, and they’ve brought the recently reformed Good Charlotte along for the ride. It’s a hell of a line up (including Against The Current, who sadly played before we arrived), and it’s clear to see how excited people are from the fact that there were kids camping overnight outside the venue.

So, first things first: this is Good Charlotte’s first tour since their four year hiatus, which is a pretty big deal. You might think they’d come across as nervous after being away for a while, but the opposite is true: they seem completely at home on the stage, and it’s as if they never left. Launching in with massive banger ‘The Anthem’, they sound fantastic, and along with inspiring a definite nostalgic feeling, they still seem incredibly relevant. Playing a setlist largely consisting of tracks off ‘The Young And The Hopeless’ goes down a storm with the crowd, with ‘Girls & Boys’ sounding particularly great. Naturally the set’s highlight comes in the form of closing track ‘Lifestyles Of The Rich And The Famous’, and it’s no less of a banger than it was when it was released 14 years ago. Good Charlotte are well and truly back with a bang.

Tonight’s headliners, All Time Low, know how to put on a show. Their stage set is hugely impressive: complete with a runway, big screens either side of the stage, great visuals, and best of all, pyrotechnics. They make a big entrance, launching straight into ‘Kids In The Dark’, arguably the best track off their most recent album ‘Future Hearts’.

This is your typical All Time Low show, packed full of catchy singalongs, massive hits and ridiculous onstage banter, mainly contributed by guitarist Jack Barakat. It’s everything you’d expect from them, but the addition of pyrotechnics just takes it to the next level. Whatever you think of them as a band, they’re hugely good fun to watch, and they have the songs to back it up.

The setlist largely consists of songs off ‘Future Hearts’ (hence the ‘Back To The Future Hearts’ tour name) which all go down a treat, but they also include a big chunk of older hits. ‘Lost In Stereo’ and ‘Damned If I Do Ya (Damned If I Don’t)’ go down an absolute storm, but the crowd have so much energy that every single track gets a massively enthusiastic response.

The band slow things down a bit with an acoustic segment, including ‘Therapy’ and ‘Missing You’. Probably the only disappointment of the set comes when the band play ‘Bail Me Out’, which features Joel Madden of Good Charlotte: frontman Alex Gaskarth announces that they would ask Joel onstage, but Good Charlotte have already left the venue. Despite this, the song still sounds great.

After a victorious performance, All Time Low leave the stage before coming back on for their encore, which consists of ‘Weightless’, ‘Something’s Gotta Give’ and finally ‘Dear Maria, Count Me In’. A fantastic ending to a glorious show. This band have well and truly earned the right to headline arenas. Bravo.