Hoobastank and Buckcherry storm the O2 Academy

PUBLISHED: 07:57 08 February 2019

Buckcherry. Picture: AMG

Buckcherry. Picture: AMG

Archant

It was a night of big ballads and rock music at the O2 Academy Bristol, as Hoobastank and Buckcherry shared the stage for a gig on Wednesday.

The evening opened with Las Vegas-based heavy rock act Adelitas Way, who managed to get the relatively sparse crowd moving a little.

The same unfortunately could not be said for Hoobastank, though this was not for want of trying.

The band stormed the stage with their usual explosive energy, but the surprisingly sedate crowd was not really into it, with frontman Doug Robb at one point pleading for people to just bob their heads.

“I set the bar very low”, he said.

The band, touring for the 15th anniversary of their career-defining album, The Reason, played the record in full, but it was a gamble since they weren’t the main draw, and it didn’t pay off.

Title track The Reason, was the clear mid-set highlight, as the audience sang along to the top-20 hit which dominated alternative music stations in summer 2005.

The ambivalence from large parts of the audience returned until the album was finished and they played singles Running Away and Crawling In The Dark, which saw the Californian four-piece leave on a high.

It was clear from the off people were there to see Buckcherry, though the Hoobastank fans had mostly cleared out by the time the main attraction got to the stage.

The Los Angeles rockers received solid cheers as they emerged for a little old-fashioned rock and roll.

The kind of band who wear their influences on their sleeves, Buckcherry look like the world’s most disorganised covers act; there are hints of Mötley Crüe, The Clash, AC/DC and Jimi Hendrix for good measure, but it works.

Frontman Josh Todd owned the stage for the entire performance, engaging with the crowd and keeping the band’s entertaining brand of old-school rock on track.

For the best part Buckcherry’s set was a string of love letters to sex, drugs and excess, however in a moment which almost seemed out of character Todd spoke briefly about being married for 16 years.

He said it wasn’t easy before launching into regret-filled ballad Sorry which had one guy at the front in floods of tears.

Bowing out with a medley of micro covers including Jungle Boogie and Two Tickets To Paradise, Buckcherry left the stage to cries of ‘one more song.’

But like all good acts, they left them wanting more.

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